Ahead of tonights matchup in St. Louis, Amalie Benjamin wrote about David Backes’ emotional return to the team that drafted him, the city where he grew up playing hockey.
One of Backes’ concerns when he suffered a concussion, the third documented of his career, was that he might not make it back to the lineup before that game. However, it was clear that he wasn’t going to rush himself back, no matter how much he wanted to play.
“I think health is first and foremost,” Backes said. “If I were to miss that game, then there’s maybe next [year] or whenever; it’ll happen sooner or later. But I think once your health’s in order, it’s back on the radar. There’s certainly not a chance I’d be pushing it to get back extra early to go play in that game. You get one brain. It’s not worth it.”
The significance of his return to St. Louis is not lost on Backes, nor his former team, the Blues. It turns out that they saved their annual charity event, one that he started with his wife (their charity work truly is fantastic), Barkin’ for the Blues for his return, so he would be able to take part.
He would really show them that Tuesday, though, he knew. He has seen players come back to their former teams, seen the receptions, the video tributes, the responses. He knows some of that might be waiting for him. He knows that the Blues saved their annual charity event “Barkin’ for Blues,” one started by Backes and his wife to benefit Athletes for Animals, for Jan. 10, when he would be back in town to share it.
He knows there will be feelings.
“As if we didn’t need any more emotion thrown into it, that [event] is going to be that night, and my wife and daughter are flying in,” Backes said. “There will be plenty going through your head, but like when [the Blues] were here, I want to stay in the moment, I want to enjoy every second of it.”
Of course, this visit to St. Louis will be involve getting together with former teammates, other friends from St. Louis and he recognizes that he will not get to spend the appropriate amount of time with everyone as he would like:
“I’ve had so many people reach out to me already to ask me what my time’s being consumed by while I’m in town and trying to reconnect and all those great relationships that we made while we were there, trying to get a little piece of that,” Backes said.
“It’s kind of analogous to my wedding day, when you’ve got 300 people that you want to spend time with, all of them at once, but you only have so much time to allocate and how you’re going to divvy that up. In the end, I imagine it’s going to be a similar feeling where it’s like, whew, that went by so fast. I didn’t get to talk to that person or that person or that person. In the end, it’s enjoyable, but it’s never long enough to really connect again with everybody that was so kind to me in 10 years.”
Of course, when it comes time for the video tribute, David will prepare himself as much as possible:
“That might put me over the top, no matter what’s happening in the moment,” Backes said. “May need a couple shifts off from Claude [Julien].”
Maybe a tissue stashed on the bench, it is suggested.
“Maybe,” he said, “a full Gatorade towel.”
Other Davids return from concussion on Saturday has brought new life to the team. He scored a goal in each of the back-to-back games this weekend, bringing his season total to 11. Hopefully, he scores at least one more against his former team tonight.
DAMN! From Tuesday night to Wednesday afternoon alone, there’s a 45 degree swing in ≈12 hours!
And it seems C. Miller was a one game thing.
Spooner at center!
Hopefully Czarnik/Hayes means Czarnik.
I like that as a fourth line – Moore’s hockey sense and Czar’s speed could be a scoring combo, although a bit concerned about splitting up 59-28-20 after their performances in the back-to-back…
I share your concern, but they need to try something!!
So everybody on Claude’s shit list from last game drops down a line?
Never realized how tough the new rosters are. Only 11 spots for 8 teams with one mandatory. Only three extras for many deserving players.
Boston, Montreal (Price/Weber) and TB (Hedman/Kucherov) got the extras for the Atlantic.
Pastrnak got SNUBBED.
Ehh… not really unless you’re dropping Marchand off the team for him. Hard to argue against any of the other double-entrants in the Atlantic.
Definitely goes back to your point about the new rosters being tough and too many deserving players and too few spots.
Yeap, and made all the worse in the East with the 8 teams. Chicago got 4 on the team (Keith, Toews, Kane, Crawford) but they have an extra slot so a bit easier.
Given the number of goals he scored, I would say it’s a snub, and yeah, I’d probably put him in over Marchand.
Maybe there’s a recency bias – Marchy done much more lately. Plus there was his World Cup heroics.
I think that’s it. Pastrnak has definitely gone quite while Marchand has seemingly upped his game. Also had the stronger year as a whole and we know the NHL looks at that as well as current season stats.
In addition to World Cup performance, have to think the age plays a part. Pastrnak is expected to have more opportunities, Marchand not so much.
Good news for Bruins though since I think the ASG nod would get Pasta a bonus and would give leverage for contract negotiations.
Monoply has opened voting on new tokens for the next edition of the game. While the emojis can fuck off, the bunny slipper is amusing.
Ooh, I do like a game of Monopoly.
Don’t really pay too much attention to the tokens, but yeah, to Hell with the emoji ones…
I’m still salty they got rid of the iron token.
You lose the iron, but gain a cat! C’mon, that’s a fair trade in anyone’s book isn’t it?
Gimme irons!!!!!! #Team Iron
But how am i going to iron my hampster clothes?
Agree about the emoji tokens. If Parker Bros. were really forward thinking, you would submit your own token ideas to them and they would have them 3D printed for your custom Monopoly game…. i think I just figured out what i’m doing with the rest of my life!!!
Where did the guy on the horse go? I think he was a cowboy?
They always made me be the dog when I was little. I wanted to be the top hat.
Pretty sure SatanMom was the thimble because she liked to sew.
My mother hates Monopoly with a passion, and always hated my father when he was playing Monopoly.
The got rid of the horse and rider. And the cannon. Jerks.
Two of the best pieces.
I was always the horse and rider since my brother HAD to be racecar and our set didn’t have howitzer or battleship. The horse was really the only respectable piece left!
Pretty sure I went with the horse and rider as well. I think Satan81 was the cannon.
Are we really a young team though? Four of their top five forwards are 28, 30, 31 and 32 and three of those four have difficult medical histories. Goalie is middle-aged at 29. Top D is still an ancient giant.
Next year we will be younger.
Even then, our top-end players will be the older guys. The youth are more depth roles, and will be so next year as well. The only up-and-coming stud in the pipeline that will be impacting in near future is Pastrnak.
We’re more like the Red Wings of the past few years… young support pieces but the the central pillars are all aging
We have a much better pipeline than the Red Wings. No doubt we are suffering from bad drafting and trading picks, but reinforcements are coming, especially on the blue line.
Agree we are better off… our pillars are much younger than theirs were these past few years. Can’t speak to the pipeline well enough. They were just the most obvious comparison.
I just can’t see calling this current team a young one when it’s so reliant on players exiting their prime.
I wasn”t talking about who anyone is relying on, but on age in general.
I just said the team will be younger.
Next year we will be younger.
Where do I sign up for THAT?
I’m glad someone chuckled.
I was so much older then, I’m younger than that now.
Yeah, we aren’t quite at the tipping point for old-to-young. They seem a little younger because guys like Krug, Schaller & K.Miller are ‘newish’ but are actually in their late 20’s. I think the average Bruin is ~27. But they will get younger soon. Spooner & Morrow likely don’t wear a Spoked-B next season, but some of the prospects are likely pressed into service. Liles is a 37-yr old UFA next season and is also likely to be supplanted by youth.
Look what’s likely going to happen next year, though.
Thinking about possible lines when we are at full strength (if that ever happens before the season finishes) it occurs to me that Spoons and Czar are essentially the same player – best suited to 3C but can play wing if really needed. We don’t really need two guys like that, which presumably comes back to the long-touted Spooner trade (presumably as part of a package?)
I keep thinking little, big trade. My targets – Marian Hossa, Marian Gaborik, Justin Williams, Chris Kunitz, hell, I’d even take Justin Abdelkader. The first four can score, have won. That kind of guy. I’d take Niklas Kronwall, if available, or a D like him, as well.
Kronwall is a 35YO D on the decline and one the IR.
Hossa is a 37YO with 4 more years at 5M and he fell off a cliff last year. Add in the cap-recapture penalty and there is a major risk to Chicago trading him.
Gaborik is a 34YO with 4 more years at 5M and he fell off a cliff last year
Abdelkader has 6 years left at a wildly overpriced 4M with a full NTC
Kunitz and Williams make sense but would cost more as pending UFAs. The other four are disastrous options… would only consider them if acquiring them for free (or for Beleskey…)
You are literally zero fun
Do you seriously want them to trade for Kronwall, Hossa, Gaborik or Abdelkader?
Who cares? Don Sweeney can’t hear Joe.
You seem particularly salty and argumentative today and I don’t really have the patience for it.
No moreso than normal. Just calling it as I see it, as per usual
I should clarify: you are salty and argumentative and *I* and super salty today, so there’s that.
Can I purchase some of said salt so i can prepare for next snowfall?
Okay, but that’s the kind of player I hope this team can pick up. Can score, veteran presence, and have won.
Dr. Recchi? Iggy? Joel Ward? uhhhmmmm Cogliano?
Will trade salt for GRIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Win a Cup, then push ’em off a cliff?
Back in New Hampshire…when our plane finally landed at midnight. I’m to tired to deal with work, but a customer when nuclear while I was gone, so taking it easy isn’t in the cards today.
Texas was fucking cold. Not that 35 highs and 18 lows are awful, but they are when the buildings down there aren’t built for that. On the bright side, I met my nephew and (as of this trip) godson for the first time. He’s cuter in person than pictures.
Might actually watch the game tonight.
Hi friends. I’m finally back in El Paso.
This after a 3″ spike blew out one of our tires in Santa Fe and I had to stay overnight so that Discount Tire could replace the tire under warranty (they’re closed on Sundays). It was fuuunnn.
Hoping to catch the game tonight.
Seems like paying to replace the tire would have been cheaper than staying the night in a motel…
We drive a Subaru. It’s 4WD, so, unless the tire is exactly the same, all four tires have to be replaced at the same time. That would have been 800 dollars. The rental car was 100 dollars, the hotel room was 40 (thanks, Marriott employee rate), and the tire replaced under warranty was 26 bucks.
Inconvenient, yes, but much less in terms of hit to pocket book.
OMG YOU USED TO WORK AT A HOTEL?!?!
I DID TOO! I worked for a Quality Inn.
Hahaha, not quite. My sister-in-law works for Marriott, so we get to enjoy the family-of-employee discount. It’s really the best thing ever.
(I will be very, very sad if said S-I-L ever leaves the company. We’ve gotten spoiled staying at Marriotts for Motel 6 prices)
(My friends were very upset when I left the hotel world for a living wage in HR. I worked the front desk for federal minimum wage. )
Saw that. Glad everything (eventually) worked out.!
Hey, there are worse places to spend a night than Santa Fe. Hope you made the best of it!
Gotta love doctors… rolled my ankle back in mid-November. Still sore with certain movements and noticed it was swollen this weekend so finally set up appointment.
Guy basically ignores ankle and just goes on about elevated blood pressure. Thanks for taking care of the issue at hand doc…
You mean, the issue at foot.
Sorry, that was dumb. Elevated blood pressure is serious too, but it would seem insignificant if your ankle is still hurting.
I think we all have elevated blood pressure this season.
Not me. I went in with zero expectations. Or I guess it would be more accurate to say bad expectations. They’re doing better than I expected, though I’ve barely watched.
Mine is just due to two midgets, lack of sleep and being a fatass
I hope this is exactly what you told your doctor. Followed by “Now fix my fucking ankle.”
Nah, I’m only an asshole to strangers online, not in person.
Pain in ankle is relatively minor, something I can just walk through 99% of the time so not a big deal. Moreso went to make sure there wasn’t some obvious damage to something that should be addressed.
^Why I avoid doctors like the plague!^ The only good doctors are right here on B2B!!!
Recchi is on B2B??
I actually like my primary but he was booked til February so had to see someone else.