David Backes, Leaving It All On The Ice

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(Above Photo Credit: NHL.com)

By Court Lalonde    @courtlalonde

Last night the biggest offseason signing by the Boston Bruins gave us all a scare as he fell awkwardly into the boards in the first period after catching an edge. David Backes was helped off the ice by teammates, walked down the tunnel to the dressing room and it seemed our luck had changed from good to bad. He channeled his inner Patrice Bergeron by coming back in the second period and scored the eventual game-winner with a wrist shot over the shoulder of Calgary Flames goaltender Chad Johnson, former Bruins back-up.

His signing over the summer wasn’t met with great fan fair with all Bruins fans; some will still say they like the player but don’t like the term. I for one was skeptical of the signing and wasn’t sure the reasoning behind it at first. We all knew the biggest need the Bruins had in the offseason was defense, scoring winger, not another centerman. I have come to realize the reasoning behind the Backes deal: his grit and leadership.

He has never really been known as a scorer by any means during his career in the National Hockey League. He has scored over 30 goals twice in his 11-year career so far and had over 60 points once. Currently, he has 15 goals, 19 assists, for 34 points, with a plus-one rating. He has been up and down the lineup and played center and winger this year on different lines. He has seemed to find his home on the right-side on the line with Bergeron and MVP candidate Brad Marchand.

His impact wasn’t felt right away on the score sheet when he moved onto the top line. However, he brought an intangible that was missing from this line which is not being afraid to take the body and plopping his butt in front of the net. The past two games on this western road trip, he has scored two goals and recorded one assist, he has also made his physical presence felt. Backes is leading the Bruins in hits this year with 190. The next closest to him on the team is Adam McQuaid with 134. He has also been known to drop the gloves from time to time to make a statement to his teammates.

 

We can all debate the term on his contract and what value he will have to this team at the end of it. What he brings in leadership currently out weights it to me. He has been sacrificing his body for his teammates all year while being a vocal leader on the bench. The Bruins currently are in a playoff spot, with his experience and new found chemistry with his line mates my optimism for a long playoff run becomes greater after every game. We always say we want them to play like the “Big Bad Bruins” again, well David Backes has been doing it all season.

About court lalonde

Diehard Bruins fan and love to talk about hockey to anyone that will listen. You could almost say I was born into the black n gold, ​but that is a story for another time.
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