Busy day for Backes with new baby boy, big role in B's win


Busy day for Backes with new baby boy, big role in B's win

BOSTON, Mass – There was no question in the mind of David Backes that he was going to play hockey on Saturday afternoon for the Bruins roughly 12 hours after his wife gave birth to an eight-pound, nine-ounce baby boy named Dawson. The 33-year-old sent out a tweet giving major props to his wife for being “an absolute warrior” after the birth of their second child, and then Backes went out and notched a couple of assists using his dad strength in a 3-1 win for the Bruins over the Detroit Red Wings at TD Garden. 

“I got about four hours two nights ago and about three hours last night. After what I saw my wife go through birthing that baby, I figured I could come on a few hours of sleep earlier today and get it done,” said a sleep-deprived Backes, who didn’t look any worse for the wear. “So [it was] quite a 24 hours for us here, and good little family time for the holidays. Looking forward to [the holiday break] and two points in a game here, another great win by our team. It’s been a good stretch and we are going to enjoy the holidays.

“You’ll have to ask my wife how well I did [during the labor] but I felt like I was involved and trying to help her through contractions, and [we got] a healthy baby boy out of the deal. I couldn’t be happier. [It was] a very proud moment for us.”


Backes clearly had moments where he looked a little weary on the ice, and the right winger finished with no shots on net and just one hit on the score sheet. But it was Backes and Patrice Bergeron that did a great job rotating positions on the 5-on-3 PP in the first period, and that set Backes up for a dish from below the goal line to Brad Marchand waiting to roof the puck over Jimmy Howard.

Marchand grabbed the puck from the first goal as a keepsake for Backes on the day his son was born, but No. 42 wasn’t done being a proud, productive dad.   

Backes was in again in the final minutes skating with Bergeron and Marchand while protecting a one goal lead in the third period, and this time the veteran forward picked up an assist on Bergeron’s empty netter to secure the game. It was remarkable to see Backes play so well given what was going on over the last couple of days, but it’s also something not to be underestimated from a team standpoint. When guys like Backes, hours after his child was born, and Marchand, needing IVs before Thursday’s game because he was so sick from the flu, suit up and play for the Bruins under trying circumstances, it sends a message of toughness and perseverance up and down the roster. 

That kind of thing will do nothing but good things team-wide, and is a fine example of the team’s best players showing dedication to the team goals. 

“He was great…inspirational on the bench and big smile on his face coming in today, and why not? A nice, healthy baby boy and everyone is doing well, so we’re all happy for him,” said Bruce Cassidy. “He was really dialed in. These are the type of games – the lower scoring, more grind it out type of games – where he really excels, and that is where we need him.”

Now Backes and the rest of the Bruins get a hard-earned three days of rest, and the Backes family gets the best present of them all with a new baby boy at home.


Krejci snaps tie late in 3rd, Bruins rally past Oilers 3-2

USA TODAY Sports Photo

Krejci snaps tie late in 3rd, Bruins rally past Oilers 3-2

David Krejci broke a tie with 1:04 remaining and the Boston Bruins rallied for three goals in the third period to beat the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 on Tuesday night.

Noel Acciari and Matt Grzelcyk also scored for the Bruins (37-13-8), who have won seven of nine and are one point back of Tampa Bay for first place in the Atlantic Division and overall NHL standings.

Ryan Strome and Jujhar Khaira had the goals for the Oilers (24-31-4), who have lost seven of eight.

The Oilers scored the game's first goal with 1:31 left in the opening period - despite being outshot 13-2 to that point - when Strome beat Boston goalie Anton Khudobin on a 2-on-1 break for his ninth of the season.

The Bruins came close five minutes into the second when David Pastrnak's shot clanged off the post behind Edmonton goalie Cam Talbot, but instead the Oilers extended their lead just more than six minutes later when a knuckler by Khaira beat Khudobin up high.

The shots favored the Bruins 29-14 through 40 minutes.

Boston got on the board 4:37 into the third when Acciari swung a puck in front of the Edmonton net and it bounced off Strome and in to make it 2-1.

The Bruins tied it with eight minutes to play after a flurry in front led to Grzelcyk putting the puck past a diving Talbot.

Boston completed the comeback with just 64 seconds to play in the third, after the Oilers lost control of the puck in their own end. Danton Heinen sent the puck out in front, allowing Krejci to score his 11th of the season.

NOTES: It was the second and final meeting this season between the teams. The Oilers took the first game 4-2 in Boston on Nov. 26. ... Oilers defenseman Kris Russellplayed his 700th NHL game. ... The Bruins acquired D Nick Holden from the New York Rangers for minor league defenseman Rob O'Gara and their third-round pick in this year's draft. Holden was not in Edmonton in time for the game.


Bruins: Saturday at Toronto.

Oilers: Host the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday.


More AP NHL:

Jarome Iginla practices with P-Bruins

Mark Divver

Jarome Iginla practices with P-Bruins

Jarome Iginla skated with the Providence Bruins in the AHL team's practice on Tuesday, according to the Providence Journal.

Iginla doesn't want to retire yet. But he's not necessarily going to get a shot in Boston. The Bruins aren't interested in signing the 40-year-old winger, but instead wanted to do him a favor, a source told the Providence Journal.

"I'd love to still play," Iginla told the Providence Journal. "This is kind of the first step, getting out here and seeing how it is. … I wanted to see if I can still go. I don't have any deals at this point."

Iginla has had a prolific career with 525 goals and 570 assists (1,095 points). During his 2016-17 season, he spent time with the Colorado Avalanche and the Los Angeles Kings. He played in 80 games, and finished with 14 goals, 13 assists and a minus-30 rating.