Bruins

David Backes provided the blueprint for how he can remain in Bruins’ regular rotation in Vegas

(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

At first glance, it would appear as though a player of David Backes’ profile would be an odd candidate when it comes to injecting some scoring punch into a forward trio.

Along with being limited to seven goals and 20 points over 70 games in 2018-19, Backes’ 5v5 expected goals for per 60 minutes rate of 2.09 ranked 25th among Bruins players that logged at least 50 minutes of ice time last year. 

The veteran power forward can’t be knocked for a lack of effort whenever he hops over the boards, but even with a summer spent working on his skating skills, it seems rather unlikely that a player like Backes is the missing piece to compliment a line such as Charlie Coyle’s over the long grind of the regular season.  

But on a north-south, straightforward checking line, Backes could do some damage — and keep himself afloat in what should be a cutthroat competition for regular minutes in Boston’s bottom-six unit.