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Nicklas Backstrom sitting out tonight as a precaution

Jan 7, 2012, 5:06 PM EDT

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Nicklas Backstrom AP

It turns out that the Capitals are going to be a bit more careful with Nicklas Backstrom.

After getting an elbow in the head from Rene Bourque, Backstrom has been practicing and working out like normal with the Caps. Coach Dale Hunter tells Mike Vogel of Dump And Chase that they’re going to err on the side of caution with Backstrom, however, and sit him out of tonight’s game against the Sharks.

“He’s not going to play,” says Caps coach Dale Hunter of Backstrom. “We’re just being careful. He feels good, but you’ve still got to be careful with it.”

Backstrom has said all along that he feels fine and that all is well, but you can’t blame the Capitals for being careful with their No. 1 centerman. After all, Backstrom is their top setup man and the guy that helps the Caps offense go. Having him sit out one game sure beats having him miss more after putting his health at risk. It’s just another example of a team taking concussion worries much more seriously.

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