Last week, Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom celebrated his 25th birthday in Russia. To mark the day, Dynamo Moscow fans gave him a birthday cake in the shape of a hockey jersey. The club published this video of an adoring Russian throng singing “Happy Birthday” to him. It’s cute, but Backstrom chanting “Dy-Na-Mo” along with them at the end is enough to break your hockey heart.
Backstrom holds his cake and poses with Dynamo fans. (Photo credit: dynamo.ru)
Since arriving in Russia to play for Alex Ovechkin’s Dynamo Moscow, Nicklas Backstrom has gotten the royal treatment. He’s lived at Dynamo’s practice facility, forced to take #99 as a jersey number (because he’s so darn great), and been invited by Ovi to some sweet celebrity-hosted parties. On Backstrom’s 25th birthday bash on Friday, the Dynamo organization and its fans went even further, creating giant banners and signs for Nicky. After his four-point game, Backstrom was then given a birthday cake. Granted, it didn’t have any of those rocket-fueled candles like Ovi’s did earlier this year.
Hm. It’s almost like they’re trying to steal him away from us or something…
Ovechkin on his GWG: “YEEEEEEESS!!” (Photo credit: Dynamo.ru)
Nicklas Backstrom and Alex Ovechkin are on quite a streak. Backstrom has points in his last six contests (including one hat trick) and has been held without a point in just two of ten games since joining Dynamo Moscow. Meanwhile, Ovechkin has a five-game point streak going and has been held without a point in just three of his 19 games in the ‘K’.
On Friday against Severstal Cherepovets, Dynamo’s first line got even deadlier, as Toronto Maple Leaf Leo Komarov joined the team after a stint with the Marlies of the AHL. The trio combined to put up 8 points and 3 goals in Dynamo’s 5-3 win over Severstal. Backstrom, who was celebrating his 25th birthday, had four points (a goal and three assists) while his BFF Ovi had two goals, including the game-winner.
Let’s see this video.
Nicky celebrates his GWG! (Photo credit: dynamo.ru)
A week after he tallied a hat trick against Vityaz Chekhov, Nicklas Backstrom destroyed Vityaz again, scoring two goals, including the game-winner, in Dynamo’s 3-2 win Tuesday.
At this point, one thing’s crystal clear: Nicky loves sixty-nine. Ever since changing his number early last week, Backstrom has morphed into the Swedish Gretzky, tallying 8 points in 4 games. In his previous 5 games with that other number, he had 3.
Now let’s see those goals.
Photo credit: hcdinamo.by
After suffering a rare loss to Severstal on Friday, newly-named/temporary captain Alex Ovechkin vented about the officiating,
inferring implying that some calls would have been made only at a kids’ game. On Sunday, with Yuri Babenko still out with injury, Ovechkin kept the C and practiced leadership of another kind. 2:45 into overtime and on the power play, Ovechkin, who played a game-high 29:09 minutes, crashed the net to knock a rebound past Pekka Rinne, giving Dynamo Moscow a 3-2 win over Dinamo Minsk (who recently severed ties with Evander Kane).
Nicklas Backstrom, two games removed from his first KHL hat trick and multi-point game, had two assists in 19:05 of ice-time.
Let’s see that game-winner.
“I help make scoar!” (Photo credit: dynamo.ru)
A few days after Alex Ovechkin signed a lockout contract with Dynamo Moscow, the Capitals captain did an interview explicitly saying he did not want to take over the captaincy like his friend Ilya Kovalchuk did with SKA St. Petersburg.
“This is a new team, I don’t know most of the guys here,” Ovechkin was quoted as saying by Dynamo’s official website. “Even if they offered me the C, I would decline. This team has leaders, veterans. And then a player with a big name shows up and muscles his way in? It would be disrespectful.”
Circumstances have changed. As Ovechkin and co. suited up against Severstal Cherepovets on Friday, normal Dynamo captain Yuri Babenko was unavailable (without explanation). Ovechkin was awarded the temporary captaincy of the team. Despite having Ovi as “kapitan,” Dynamo suffered a rare defeat, 4-2 loss to Severstal.
Nicky celebrates his hat trick. (Photo credit: KHL.ru)
Fresh off their week-long break for national team competition, Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstsrom, and the rest of Dynamo Moscow crew returned to action Wednesday against infamous Vityaz Chekhov. It was worth the wait. Backstrom, who finally switched his number during the Karjala Cup break, went APE NUTS in his new 69 jersey, registering his first career KHL hat trick and scoring the game’s decisive goal – an overtime game-winner.
While Backstrom was dominant, registering six shots during 22:04 of ice time, his BFF Ovi was no slouch either, assisting on one of Nicky’s goals and firing nine shots on net in 27:05 of game action.
Now let’s see these goals.
Before their game against Vityaz Chekhov, Dynamo Moscow’s official Twitter posted a photo of Nicklas Backstrom‘s new #69 jersey lying neatly by his locker. Backstrom’s old #99, which he apparently never wanted to wear out of respect or something, is now kaput. Nicky is still the Swedish Gretzky in my book.
Photo credit: @dynamo_ru.
Graphic by Ian Oland.
Sad news, you guys. Nicklas Backstrom has decided to change his Dynamo Moscow jersey number to 69.
Magnus Nystrom of expressen.se, first to detail the news, explains that Backstrom never wanted Gretzky’s holy number to begin with and had to work hard to change it.
Photo credit: dynamo.ru
With leading scorer Alex Ovechkin out sick with bronchitis, Dynamo Moscow needed someone to pick up the slack against rival Dinamo Riga on Monday. That person was Nicklas Backstrom.
With three seconds left in the first period, Backstrom scored his first career KHL goal, deflecting Filip Novak’s shot past Dinamo goaltender Mikael Tellqvist while on the power play.