Capitals' Backstrom mired in longest scoring drought of career
Nicklas Backstrom is the center of attention in Washington these days, but for reasons wholly unfamiliar.
The Capitals center finds himself in the midst of a seven-game point drought, the longest such streak up to this point in his career.
Since Backstrom entered the NHL in 2007, only five players have recorded more than his 740 points: teammate Alex Ovechkin (855), Sidney Crosby (818), Patrick Kane (766), Evgeni Malkin (765), and Joe Thornton (740).
Backstrom is averaging 0.99 points per game through the beginning of his 11th season, so to go seven appearances without so much as a secondary assist is quite something.
Still, Capitals head coach Barry Trotz, who's seen his team post a record of 4-3-0 without any tangible offensive contributions from his top center, remains firmly in Backstrom's corner.
"(Backstrom) has done a really good job," Trotz said, per Tom Gulitti of NHL.com. "I know there's a lot been said about not scoring or whatever. To me, it's about winning, and he's had all of the tough matchups. He's still creating good offense, but he hasn't got the numbers.
"I don't think I have to tell you what I think of Nicklas Backstrom. He's one of the best two-way centermen in the National Hockey League and he should be a Selke (Trophy) candidate every year."
Backstrom will look to get back on the score sheet Friday against Pittsburgh.