Alan May: Caps have 'two legitimate no. 1 centers' in Backstrom and Kuznetsov

Josh Luckenbaugh
October 11, 2018 - 9:43 am

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

In just three games this season, the Capitals have scored 18 goals, putting five past Marc-Andre Fleury and the Golden Knights Wednesday night to win the Stanley Cup Final rematch. 

According to Alan May, the contributions of Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeny Kuznetsov are one of the keys to Washington's offensive proficiency. 

"Right now, those two guys are toying with teams on the power play," May told The Junkies Thursday. "There are so many options, so many looks. A lot of teams don't even have a quarterback. The Caps have two guys that are legitimate no. 1 centers running their power play."

"And they're so selfless, they're getting the job done ... I'm loving watching those two guys pick teams apart on the power play right now."

Kuznetsov currently ranks sixth in the NHL in points with seven, four of them tallied Wednesday night with a goal and three assists against Vegas, while Backstrom is tied for seventh (along with T.J. Oshie and John Carlson) with six. 

May commented on Kuznetsov's rise into superstardom, telling The Junkies to expect the Russian forward to stay near the top of the scoring charts the rest of the season, and beyond. 

"Now he's held to a higher standard because everyone knows how great he can be, and he's delivering right now," May said. "Right now he's on pace for 191, 192 points. I think this year scoring will be up overall in the league when it's all said and done. We'll have a lot of players in the multiple and 100-point area, and in my opinion he should be in the top-three scoring every season." 

"He's that talented, he's that good, he's that elite of a player. And not just because he's a Washington Capital. I've seen this for years. I wanted more out of him, and right now we're getting more. And certainly that's why the Caps are defending Stanley Cup champs, because he brought the best of his abilities every game."

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