Screen cap: @Capitals
At the 2022 NHL trade deadline, the Washington Capitals made two transactions, the most notable being the acquisition of forward Marcus Johansson, who played for the team for seven seasons from 2010-2017. The former first-round pick spoke after morning skate ahead of the team’s tilt with the St. Louis Blues.
Johansson, who the Capitals drafted in the first-round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, played 501 games with the Capitals before the team traded him in the summer of 2017 to the New Jersey Devils. The move came before the team’s Stanley Cup-winning season in 2017-18.
“Yeah, obviously you want to be part of it and win, but you’re happy for the guys, you battle for seven years with them and that was the one goal, we didn’t get there and your friends get a chance to do that. Obviously I’m happy for them, but it’s frustrating not being part of it, but that’s the way it goes, you just want to go out and get these guys to try and do it again”.
Johansson, who is a free agent after the season, has developed into a more all-around player, something his longtime teammate in Washington and fellow Swede Nicklas Backstrom expressed when speaking to the media yesterday. He is set to make his first appearance of his second stint with the Capitals tonight, and took line rushes with Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov during the morning skate.
“Coming here always feels like home. I’m just excited for the opportunity, this feels special. It’s been awhile since I’ve been here, but it kind of feels the same still. That’s kind of what makes this special, coming here you still feel like you know everybody, the friendships and bonds you’ve had all the years, somehow it feels like nothing’s changed. Some of the systems are a bit different with a new coach and all that, but it’s familiar and just walked through and I’m excited for a chance to get out there tonight and play hockey. I played with Kuzy the last two years I was here, and I think we had a lot of chemistry, and obviously played with Ovi a lot before that. So just got to go out there and play, do your best and work hard, and I think things will come by itself”.
“I think you grow and you learn every year, and every new experience you have, I feel like I’m a better hockey player and feel like I’ve taken steps in the right direction. There’s been a lot of injuries in the last few years, but I still feel like I’ve grown as a person and as hockey player too, and I’m excited to be here and show what I can do…Defense and speed, and try to help those two guys out as much as I can”.
“This is the one place I wanted to go. We were here a few weeks ago – coming here always still feels like home. I’m just very excited for the opportunity. This feels special and I’m just very happy to be here.”
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) March 22, 2022
The Capitals face the St. Louis Blues tonight at 7:00 PM EST.
By Michael Fleetwood