Nicklas Bäckström (born 23th November 1987) is a Swedish ice hockey center. He has been played in the NHL since 2007 and he has played his whole NHL career with the Washington Capitals. He Is currently alternate captain of the Capitals. Nicklas Bäckström has won Stanley Cup once (2018).
Nicklas Bäckström began his junior career in the 2002-03 season with Brynäs IF J20. He was called up to the Elitserien with Brynäs IF in the 2004-05 season. Bäckström’s second season in Elitserien (2005-06) was good and he quickly becoming a first-line center. Bäckström was drafted 4th overall at the 2006 NHL draft by Washington Capitals. Bäckström said after the draft that he will play one more season with Brynäs IF. On 21.5.2017, Bäckström signed a three-year contract with the Capitals.
Nicklas Bäckström found his place quickly alongside Alexander Ovechkin in the first line of the Capitals. His vision and passing skills combined with scoring capability of Ovechkin works fine together and Bäckström finished his rookie campaign with 69 (14+55) points. Despite scoring points, Bäckström also earned quickly reputation with his defensive prowess and he was very valuable asset when short-handed. He was runner-up to the Blackhawks’ Patrick Kane for 2007-08 Calder Trophy.
Even Bäckström and Ovechkin continued playing well, the Capitals earned reputation to be a losing team in the NHL playoffs. They reached playoffs every year between 2008 – 2013, but always lose even first or second round. The Capitals lost twice in a row to Pittsburgh Penguins in NHL playoffs second round (2016 and 2017), after they finally won them in 2018. After that win, the Capitals were unstoppable and they won first Stanley Cup of franchise history.
Bäcktröm was one of the key players of the playoffs and he scores 23 points (5+18) in the 2018 playoffs, even he missed 4 games with injuries. Nicklas Bäckström is currently the Capitals’ all-time leader in assists and his number still grows, because on 14.1.2020, the Capitals signed Bäckström to a five-year contract extension.
Nicklas Bäckström has won a gold medal at the 2006 and 2017 IIHF World Ice Hockey Championships. Bäckström was only 18 years old, when he won his first World Championships gold medal. He also won silver medal in the 2014 Winter Olympics, but Bäckström was not allowed to play in final after Bäckström’s A-sample indicated doping (pseudoephedrine).
Other interesting stuff
Nicklas Bäckström had most assists and he is second at points in the Capitals franchise history. During the 2012-13 NHL lockout, Bäckström played for Dynamo Moscow of the KHL along his linemate Alexander Ovechkin.