Rasmus Sandin making the most of opportunity in Washington originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
The moves the Washington Capitals made before the 2023 trade deadline were, understandably, headlined by the players the franchise traded away. Washington moved on from five key veterans — all on expiring contracts — before the March 3 deadline, prioritizing the long-term future of the organization rather than the remainder of this season.
However, one of the young players the Capitals acquired in return has made an instant impact. That would be Rasmus Sandin, a promising defenseman who was previously buried on Toronto’s third blue-line pair and hopeful of a bigger opportunity.
Since arriving in Washington, Sandin has played on the Capitals’ top defensive pair with John Carlson still sidelined. And four games into his Capitals tenure, the recently turned 23-year-old has made the most of his opportunity — and then some.
Sandin has recorded eight points since joining the Capitals, the most of any NHL defenseman during that span. He’s turned in three multi-point outings in his first four games with the franchise, something no Capitals player had previously done before.
Following Saturday night’s victory over the Islanders, a contest Sandin recorded three primary assists in, NBC Sports Washington’s Alan May asked the Swede a simple question: What’s going on with you?
“I have no idea. I’m a little bit surprised myself,” a smiling Sandin said.
In his first game with the Capitals against San Jose last Saturday, Sandin recorded three assists in Washington’s blowout victory over the Sharks. Two days later, he was part of both of Washington’s goals against the Kings, picking up one goal and one assist in that contest. Then on Thursday against the Devils, Sandin turned in a career-high 29:58 minutes of ice time.
Saturday night’s outing against the Islanders was perhaps his best with the club thus far, however. Sandin recorded three more points against New York, all assists, and played an instrumental role in the Capitals’ impressive 5-1 victory over the team they’re chasing in the playoff race.
“I’m just having fun out there,” Sandin said. “All the guys are helping me out a lot out there. I’m just having a lot of fun.”
With the Capitals trailing 1-0 early in the first period against the Islanders, Sandin found Dylan Strome on a pretty backhand pass to set up a goal-scoring opportunity. Strome fired a strike right above Semyon Varlamov’s right…
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