Okay, well maybe not the entire country, but it sure looks that way. About two weeks ago, St. Louis Blues forward David Backes learned that he would be representing the United States in the upcoming Olympic Games in Vancouver, Canada. Since then it appears he is on a mission to drop the gloves with every player on Canada’s roster before the games begin. I like his style.
As you know, I’m a huge Blues fan and Backes is my favorite player. I tend to admire the players who are A) from the United States B) score goals and C) are willing and able to drop the gloves every now and again. A power forward, if you will. And not a Tomas Holmstrom power forward. He’s just fat, unskilled and too wussy to get in a scrap.
Anyway, Backes certainly isn’t known for his fighting ability (he’s gotten in 13 fights in four years) but he can certainly hold his own. Since 2010 began, however, that is a different story.
First, Backes pounded Chicago Blackhawks’ Captain and team Canada member Jonathan Toews into the ice on January 2nd. Rumor has it that Toews actually vomited twice in the penalty box afterward.
Toews actually looked like he initiated the fight even if Backes started the contact. Not a great decision on the young captain’s part. It was only Toews’ second fight in the NHL, but maybe he should stick to scoring.
Then, five days later, Backes and Team Canada forward Corey Perry dropped the gloves in the first period of the Blues-Ducks game. Once again, Backes got the resounding victory.
Perry has much more experience with fisticuffs than Toews, but he gets the same treatment. Also, it appears commentator Darren Pang catches on to Backes’ plan. I wonder if he had some inside information?
Two nights ago Backes again took on a Team Canada member, this time it was Columbus’s Rick Nash. This one was completely instigated by Backes as he runs Nash in the corner and drops the gloves immediately. I think it was definitely planned out. Nash got the better of the exchange, getting in a few shots before it’s quickly broken up.
If Backes is truly trying to stir the pot with the Canadian team before the Olympics then he’s doing a good job. Just check out the comments under his fights at hockeyfights.com. I think this should endear him to the American Hockey fans as they begin their quest for a medal this February.
One final video from Mr. Backes. This one is from the World Hockey Championships in 2008. Keep in mind that actually dropping the gloves and fighting is considered taboo in most international competitions. However, this happens at the end of a game after American Dustin Brown lays a questionable hit on Finland’s Jussi Jokinen. Then Anssi Salmela decides he wants a piece of Chuck Norris David Backes.
For his troubles, Salmela gets a broken nose and a bloody lip. He might let Backes drop his gloves first next time.
Should be a fun Olympics.
Update: After tonight’s 1-0 win against the Minnesota Wild I decided to look for some potential matchups for Mr. Backes. Here’s what I came up with:
Monday, January 18th and Saturday, January 30th vs. the Columbus Blue Jackets: Could we have a return bout against Rick Nash? They didn’t really get a chance to get going in the last game.
Saturday, January 23rd vs. the Anaheim Ducks: Corey Perry might be willing to go again, but I’d look for Ryan Getzlaf to add his name to Backes’ hitlist.
Monday, January 25th vs. the Calgary Flames: If I had to put money on a fight happening, it would be this one with Jarome Iginla.
Wednesday, February 3rd and Saturday, February 6th vs. the Chicago Blackhawks: I’m betting Jonathan Toews will cower in the corner when Backes gets near him, but Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook might be willing to try their luck. Backes has an illustrious history of beating on the Blackhawks.
Thursday, February 4th vs. the San Jose Sharks: Dany Heatley is on the Canadian team, but he’s only been in one fight in his career and it was a weak one with Nolan Pratt in the 2006 playoffs. This one ain’t happenin’.
Filed under: NHL | Tagged: Anaheim Ducks, Chicago Blackhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Corey Perry, David Backes, Fight!, Jonathan Toews, Rick Nash, st. louis blues, Team Canada Hockey, Team USA Hockey |