Nicklas Backstrom skated for the first time in more than two weeks Friday and afterward said he does not have a concussion, only a neck injury. The Capitalsâ€™ No. 1 center said he is healthy and will be ready for the start of the season.
â€śIâ€™m 100 percent,â€ť Backstrom said. â€śI know itâ€™s a lot of speculations about whatâ€™s going on and stuff, but this is something I wanted to check out. So I went to Michigan, got it checked out.
â€śNo concussion, so we can all be calm,â€ť Backstrom said.
Backstrom, 25, visited neurologist Jeffrey Kutcher, director of the Michigan NeuroSport program at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, on Wednesday and it was determined he had not suffered another concussion.
â€śIt was more the neck,â€ť Bakcstrom said. â€śStiffness and all those kinds of things, nothing serious.â€ť
Friday marked the first time Backstrom skated since falling awkwardly into the boards during a game with Dynamo Moscow in Russia on Dec. 26. Backstrom participated fully in all drills during the informal workout, showing no hesitation while on the ice.
Although he said he didnâ€™t worry about the possibility of a concussion, Backstrom acknowledged the need to take extra precautions when a head injury is a possibility.
â€śI think everyone in the league is going to be more serious about those things,â€ť Backstrom said. â€śItâ€™s your head, you only have one head, you canâ€™t really do anything about it. Youâ€™ve got to make sure itâ€™s 100 percent so you can perform out there.”