High Demand for Capitals’ Nic Dowd Grows as Trade Deadline Approaches

In anticipation of the 2023-24 NHL season, trade rumors involving Washington Capitals players are already swirling. After being sellers at last year’s trade deadline, the Caps are determined to avoid a similar situation this year. However, other teams are eyeing certain players on their roster, with fourth-line center Nic Dowd being a prime target.

The Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli recently reported that “teams are already clamoring” for Dowd as a potential trade deadline acquisition.

Seravalli writes:

While he may not generate the same buzz or return as other players, teams are already expressing strong interest in acquiring Washington Capitals center Nic Dowd before the trade deadline. Cup contenders view Dowd as a reliable fourth-line center who excels in all areas of his game. He is an affordable player with term on his contract who can make a significant impact.

Despite dealing with injuries, including a 16-game absence due to a lower-body issue, Dowd had a breakthrough season in 2022-23. He achieved career highs in goals (13) and points (25) while playing a crucial role in one of the league’s most effective checking lines.

Dowd is now the sole remaining forward from the Caps’ former fourth line under coach Peter Laviolette. His line mates Garnet Hathaway and Carl Hagelin have moved on, leaving Dowd as the mainstay.

In the upcoming season, Dowd is expected to resume his position as the center of the fourth line, flanked by Beck Malenstyn and Aliaksei Protas, who were part of the 2023 Calder Cup winning team.

The 33-year-old Dowd, a native of Alabama, underwent core surgery during the offseason. He is expected to be fully recovered for the start of the regular season but will require regular maintenance to manage the issue.

Last week, Dowd expressed his commitment to maintaining and improving his health, stating, “I’m focused on continually building on my progress and avoiding any setbacks. It’s a lot of maintenance, rehab, and warming up before practice. As you get older, these things become necessary in this physically demanding game. I’ve been fortunate so far.”

Dowd still has two years remaining on his three-year contract extension with the Caps, which he signed in November 2021. The deal carries an average annual value of $1.3 million.

Headline photo: Alan Dobbins/RMNB


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