David Backes' career with the Boston Bruins didn't go as planned, but he now has a chance for a fresh start with the Anaheim Ducks.
The Bruins traded Backes, along with a 2020 first-round pick and prospect Axel Andersson to the Ducks on Friday for forward Ondrej Kase.
Backes reacted to the trade for the first time in a conference call Friday afternoon. The 35-year-old forward noted he was hoping for another opportunity to extend his pro career, and that he had to waive his no-trade clause for the deal to go through.
Backes said he did have to waive his no-trade clause to go to Anaheim.— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) February 21, 2020
"It was a place where they want me to be a player and want me to help in the locker room, bring whatever I can bring to help with the group. That’s certainly something that I take pride in.”
Here's Ducks general manager Bob Murray's comments on the Backes portion of this trade.
Backes was waived by the Bruins last month and assigned to the AHL's Providence Bruins, although Boston announced he wasn't going to play for the P-Bruins. He tallied just 23 points in 86 games since the start of last season, failing to carve out a consistent role in the B's lineup.
His contract also was an issue for the Bruins. The deal still has another year remaining with a $6 million salary-cap hit. By trading Backes and retaining 25 percent of his salary, in addition to acquiring Kase and his $2.6 million cap hit, the Bruins have created about $2 million in cap space. This room gives the Bruins more flexibility to make other deals before Monday's NHL trade deadline and/or re-sign important free agents such as defenseman Torey Krug.
The Ducks enter Friday with the second-worst record in the Western Conference and won't be playing in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, so Backes should get plenty of chances the final two months of the regular season to prove he's still an NHL-caliber player.
Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of the NHL trade deadline. This Monday at 2:30 p.m., stream the 2020 NHL Trade Deadline Show on the MyTeams app and on NBCSportsBoston.com.