Nicklas Backstrom, who skipped practice Tuesday because of an illness, was back on the ice at Kettler Capitals Iceplex Wednesday and said he should be just fine for Game 1 against Montreal.
Backstrom finished the regular season with 33 goals and 68 assists playing center on the top line with Alex Ovechkin and, for the most part, Mike Knuble. He has never missed a game in his three-year NHL career (267 straight games, including 21 playoff games).
"I feel better than yesterday and I was able to practice and felt OK," Backstrom said. "(Tuesday) I was sick. I was laying down in bed all day. I don't want to go into details, but I was sick. I'll be fine and I’m excited for (Game 1)."
Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau said that if Backstrom feels good than he's definitely going to play.
Backstrom was asked jokingly by an ESPN.com reporter if he was contagious. Playing along, the young Swede told the throng of reporters hovering over him, "If I were you guys I would be standing a little bit further away."
So, Backstrom was in good spirits and he participated in the entire hour-long workout.
Like we said, breathe easy, Caps fans.
Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at: @drosennhl