CapsTrainingCampDay2 (6 of 10)

Photo: Chris Gordon.

Day two of Capitals training camp was Saturday, and the team continued the tough pace set by Barry Trotz on Friday. Each of the three group of players spent about an hour and the half on the ice, focusing on drills designed to simulate game situations and learn the system. With the first preseason game just hours away, three groups of Caps battled along the boards for loose pucks and charged at the net. Unlike previous regimes, Trotz is throwing the players into the fire quickly.

“This is the one day we had to prepare to play tomorrow,” the coach told reporters. “We tried to get a lot of stuff in that was situational.”

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At around 5:45 pm, Nicklas Backstrom‘s Twitter account @Backstrom19 started tweeting incomprehensible links to its 90k followers at the speed of light. Take a look.

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Led by Corey Masisak, a team of NHL.com writers have published their ranking of the league’s top 14 centers. Washington Capitals center Nick Backstrom is not on that list.

Nathan MacKinnon, Claude Giroux, Joe Thornton, and Henrik Sedin all ranked above Backstrom. Only one writer, Dan Rosen, included Backstrom in the top 14.

I’m not outraged. I can kind of see why they did it, and it all depends on how we define our terms.

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Photo: aftonbladet.se

Prior to Brynäs’s preseason game against Djurgården on Thursday, Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom took to his hometown ice and was given an Olympic silver medal. Federal Chairman Christer Englund gave Backstrom the award while flanked by national team coach Per Mårts by his side. The crowd gave Nicky a standing ovation.

Nearly six months to the day, Backstrom finally felt “vindication” after getting banned from the gold medal game for taking too much allergy medicine.

After the ceremony, Backstrom spoke to Swedish outlets about how happy he was that this drama is finally over.

The wonderful Matilda Wrigsjö has your translation.

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Photo: @MalinElis

In late February, as Swedish center Nicklas Backstrom prepared for one of the biggest games of his career, he learned he tested positive for a banned substance, Zyrtec D, an allergy medication.

Backstrom was barred from playing against Canada in the Sochi Olympics gold-medal game. He watched from the sidelines as his teammates got shut out 3-0. He suffered through a miserable press conference after the game and then another in Washington DC when he returned to North America for NHL action.

On March 14th, the International Olympic Committee ruled that Backstrom had suffered enough and that the gold medal game suspension was a sufficient punishment.

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Photo: Conny Svensson of arbetarbladet.se

While in his homeland of Sweden, Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom does a lot for the community. Earlier this summer, Backstrom presented his scholarship for the fifth time to two talented 16-year-old student athletes.

On Sunday, as first reported by Malin Andersson of Hockey Ramblings, Nicky amped up the cuteness to 11 while visiting a hospital in Gävle to participate in the clinic’s Play Therapy program.

The program inspires sick children before they undergo needed medical treatments. And they do it by– you guessed it– playing!

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Photo: Al Bello

Tuesday at noon, Swedish center Nicklas Backstrom will be playing in his first game since the Caps regular season ended on April 13th. Backstrom will be participating in Brynäs’s Black and White scrimmage – an exhibition that’s been held every year in Sweden since the 1970’s. Backstrom played three seasons for Brynäs as a teenager before being drafted by the Caps.

For those of you who are hockey starved, I’ve got some great news. The scrimmage will be available to be watched live online via a Brynäs stream at noon (as long as that link is not geo-protected).

Backstrom shot a video for Brynäs’s Instagram earlier Monday to promote the game.

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Photo: gd.se

A few weeks ago, schools let out in Sweden. But before the kids were freed for the summer, a special scholarship was awarded to two special 16-year-old student athletes, Sebastian Mattson and Julia Holmstrom.

According to gd.se, the students received the Nicklas Backstrom scholarship, which they got straight from the Capitals superstar himself. They traveled to Backstrom’s hometown of Valbo to receive the prize.

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Despite not making the playoffs, a lot of Washington Capitals players still have some hockey left to play. Last week, Caps captain Alex Ovechkin announced that Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov, and he will be representing Team Russia in the 2014 World Championships happening in Minsk, Belarus.

But what of the Caps’ Swedes? After winning a silver medal in Sochi, Marcus Johansson will likely not represent his home country due to a broken arm. On Thursday, Pär Mårts, Sweden’s national team coach, told Svenska Dagbladet that Nicklas Backstrom has turned down an invitation to play in the tournament this year.

When asked why, Mårts said Backstrom won’t be playing “for family reasons.”

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obi-speaks

Photo: Chris Gordon

On Monday, the Washington Capitals held Breakdown Day at Kettler Capitals Iceplex. For two hours, Caps players filed out of the locker room and conducted exit interviews with the media. Because of the whole no playoffs thing, there were a lot of long faces.

There’s about three hours of interview video to surf though on Monumental Network. Because I hate myself and care only about you, dear reader, I’ve transcribed all the key quotes. And because this is RMNB, I also pointed out the fashion choices. Sadly, there was no crazy hair this year.

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