Backstrom a Young Star
This won’t come as a surprise to anyone who has followed the Capitals this season, but Nicklas Backstrom has been named as a participant in the NHL’s YoungStars event for All-Star weekend in Atlanta. Here is the text of the release:
Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom is one of the 16 NHL YoungStars invited to the 2008 NHL All-Star Weekend, the NHL announced today. Backstrom will join seven other Eastern Conference YoungStars to compete in a new three-on-three event as part of the Dodge/NHL SuperSkills competition on Saturday, Jan. 26, at Philips Arena in Atlanta (7 p.m. ET, VERSUS).
Backstrom, 20, was Washington’s first-round choice, fourth overall, in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. He currently stands third on the Capitals and third among all NHL rookies in scoring with 31 points (eight goals, 23 assists) in 44 games. His 23 assists are second on the team and tied for second among NHL rookies.
A native of Gavle, Sweden, Backstrom has been especially effective lately. Since Nov. 23 – the day he turned 20 – Backstrom has 22 points in 31 games (seven goals, 15 assists), including seven multiple-point games.
Backstrom will be joining linemate Alex Ovechkin in Atlanta for the All-Star Weekend festivities, as Ovechkin will represent the Eastern Conference in his second consecutive NHL All-Star Game. Backstrom becomes the third Capital to be named an NHL YoungStar (Mike Green in 2007, Brian Sutherby in 2003).