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Nicklas Bäckström: Wikis

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Born November 23, 1987 (1987-11-23) (age 22),
Gävle, SWE
Height
Weight
6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
210 lb (95 kg; 14 st 0 lb)
Position Center
Shoots Left
NHL team Washington Capitals
Ntl. team  Sweden
NHL Draft 4th overall, 2006
Washington Capitals
Playing career 2004 – present
Website Backstrom19.com

Lars Nicklas Bäckström (born November 23, 1987) is a Swedish professional ice hockey center currently playing for the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League (NHL).

Contents

Early life

Bäckström's father Anders is a known Swedish hockey player who played his whole hockey career for Brynäs, totaling 10 seasons for the club. Nicklas' older brother Kristoffer is also a hockey player, but in the second tier of the Swedish league system with Hammarby.

Playing career

Bäckström was a top prospect in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft and was selected fourth overall by the Washington Capitals. With that, he became the fourth-highest drafted Swede, after Mats Sundin (first), Daniel Sedin (second), and Henrik Sedin (third).

He played his first game with the Swedish national team on April 6, 2006, in a game against Norway. He won the World Championship when he represented Sweden in the 2006 World Championship. As of that tournament he is the youngest Swedish player ever in an Ice Hockey World Championship tournament. Bäckström played the last four games in the WC (roster spot held open for Daniel Alfredsson) and was directly appointed to the first line together with idol Henrik Zetterberg and Johan Franzén.

On July 10, 2006, it was announced that he had turned down an offer from Washington Capitals and had decided to play in Brynäs for at least one more season.

On May 21, 2007, Bäckström signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Washington Capitals, to begin playing during the 2007–08 NHL season.

On October 5, 2007, he scored his first NHL point, an assist on a goal by fellow Swede Michael Nylander, against the Atlanta Thrashers.

Upon his arrival to the NHL, Bäckström was solid but not spectacular as he made the transition to the smaller ice rinks of North America. However, after an injury to Nylander, Bäckström was promoted to the first line, where he flourished. Playing alongside Alexander Ovechkin, Bäckström set NHL and team records while helping Ovechkin win the Art Ross Trophy and the Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy.

Bäckström was the runner up to Chicago's Patrick Kane for the Calder Trophy. Kane had 1,087 votes while Bäckström had 872 votes. The Blackhawks' Jonathan Toews was third with 647. However, Bäckström was named to the All-Rookie Team along with Kane and Toews. [1]

In his second NHL season, Bäckström would go on to lead both the Capitals and Swedish NHL players with 66 assists, and added 22 goals for 88 points, placing him within the top ten NHL scorers in the 2008–09 regular season. Bäckström would again prove to be a force in the playoffs, tallying 15 points in 14 games. Going into the 2009-10 NHL season, Bäckström has solidifed himself as the Washington Capitals number one center, pivoting Russian superstar Alexander Ovechkin.

Following the 2008–09 NHL playoffs, Bäckström was awarded the Viking Award for being the best Swedish-born player in the 2008–09 NHL season; he is only the second Capital to win this award, following behind Calle Johansson.

Bäckström's entry-level contract expires after the 2009–10 NHL season, in which he will become a restricted free agent.

On December 27, 2009, it was announced that Bäckström would play for Team Sweden in the 2010 Winter Olympics.[1]

Bäckström led Team Sweden in the 2010 Olympics with 6 points in 4 games before they were eliminated by Slovakia in the quarterfinals. [2]

International play

Medal record
Competitor for  Sweden
Men's ice hockey
World Championships
Gold 2006 Riga
World U18 Championships
Bronze 2005 Plzeň

Played for Sweden in:

Career statistics

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Regular season and playoffs

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2003–04 Brynäs IF J20 21 2 6 8 2 5 0 0 0 4
2004–05 Brynäs IF J20 29 17 17 34 24
2004–05 Brynäs IF SEL 19 0 0 0 2
2005–06 Brynäs IF SEL 46 10 16 26 30 4 1 0 1 2
2005–06 Brynäs IF J20 1 0 0 0 2
2006–07 Brynäs IF SEL 45 12 28 40 46 7 3 3 6 6
2007–08 Washington Capitals NHL 82 14 55 69 24 7 4 2 6 2
2008–09 Washington Capitals NHL 82 22 66 88 46 14 3 12 15 8
SEL totals 110 22 44 66 78 11 4 3 7 8
NHL totals 164 36 121 157 70 21 7 14 21 10

International

Year Team Event GP G A Pts PIM
2005 Sweden Jr. WJC U18 7 2 3 5 4
2006 Sweden Jr. WJC 6 4 3 7 2
2006 Sweden WC 4 0 0 0 0
2007 Sweden Jr. WJC 7 0 7 7 20
2007 Sweden WC 9 1 5 6 4
2008 Sweden WC 9 3 4 7 4
2010 Sweden Oly 4 1 5 6 0
Junior int'l totals 38 10 19 29 44
Senior int'l totals 41 8 17 25 12

Awards

Records

  • Youngest Swedish player ever in World Championship (18 years and 6 months).[3]
  • First NHL rookie to record four assists in two consecutive games.[4]
  • Most assists in a season by a rookie, Washington Capitals team record (55 assists), 2007–08 NHL season

References

External links



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