It’s always sad when the icons of your childhood teams have to step down from the team or get traded away. But it’s particularly tragic when it happens because of a freak injury and just general damage to their body that has accumulated over their career.
The Washington Capitals’ center, Nicklas Backstrom, recently announced that he will be stepping away from the game as a result of ongoing health concerns related to injuries that he has not been able to properly recover from.
Just yesterday, on November 1, he spoke to his teammates in the locker room before practice and informed the Capitals’ front office of his decision. Backstrom also shared the following statement with the press:
Given my ongoing injury situation, I decided to take some time and step away from the game. This is a difficult decision, but one that I feel is right for my health at this time. I want to thank my teammates, the organization, and fans for their unwavering support throughout this process. I ask for privacy at this time as I determine my next steps and viable options moving forward.
Since then, the Capitals’ President and GM, Brian MacLellan, has come out with clear support of Backstrom and his decision saying, “We stand behind Nicklas and will support him throughout this process. We know firsthand how hard he has worked and how determined he is to get back to full health. Our organization stands fully behind him while he takes his leave of absence from the team and takes time to evaluate his current health situation,”.
Nicklas Backstrom’s career as a Washington Capital is one of the most impressive and complete professional athletic careers by any athlete who spent their entire career representing Washington D.C., solidifying an incredible career.
He finished his career in the NHL as the Washington Capital’s all-time assist leader with 762 and the second in all-time points by a Capital with 1,033, behind only teammate Alexander Ovechkin.