Dynamo Moscow’s rookie, Nicklas Backsrom, says he likes playing on the big ice after opening his scoring tally in the KHL.
The Washington Capitals star, who moved to the Russian capital during the NHL lockout, needed three games to net his first goal in the new league.
Backsrom scored on a power play late in the first period to help Dynamo Moscow to a 3-1 win against visiting Dynamo Riga.
“It's difficult to compare this league with the NHL,” he told Sportbox.ru. “The game is completely different here because of the size of the rinks. But I like this style, although the match against Dynamo Riga was only the third for me in the KHL. It is too early to give a more serious evaluation. Let’s return to this conversation after I’ve played more games.”
But the Swede stressed that it’s already clear that moving to the Kontinental Hockey League was the right decision.
“I like everything,” he said. “Of course, the adaptation takes time: you have to get used to the new time zone because I came straight from Washington. When there’s night there it’s daytime here. I have to readjust. I would also like to get to know the guys better. Although, now I can say that the first impression of Russia is very good. And the main thing is the level of hockey. That's why I decided to come here – I've heard that it is very high.”
Backsrom was also asked to comment on the performance of his Washington partner, Aleksandr Ovechkin, whom he rejoined in Dynamo.
“Alex is always extremely dangerous when on the puck,” the 24-year-old stressed. “He treats it like no other. The same can be said about his power struggle. Ovechkin never avoids contact.”
“Washington fans love him. In Russia, just like in America, the fans love to watch him play. And I understand why,” he added.
Backsrom has spent the last five years with the Capitals, grabbing 367 points (101 goals and 266 assists).