With injuries ravaging the Boston Bruins lineup, several players including David Backes and Matt Beleskey will be taking on larger roles.
For the two of them specifically, the increased playing time is huge, but means something entirely different for each of them.
David Backes proved to be a solid free agent acquisition last season, scoring 17 goals to goalong with 38 points.
He hasn’t seen the ice much this season due to an intense illness that temporarily put him on injured reserve.
In his two games, he has yet to score, but he is still being eased back into the swing of things.
While center David Krejci misses time, the Bruins are moving him from right wing to center, giving him the spot light on the second line.
Backes is a natural winger, but being able to make some plays in a larger role could be huge for him.
While Backes will be striving for stardom, Beleskey should be battling for his job.
The 29 year old winger missed a fair amount of time last year with an injury, but even when he played, it wasn’t pretty.
He only managed three goals and was -10 on the ice. He isn’t off to a great start this year either, in six games he doesn’t have a point and is -2.
Matt Beleskey isn’t likely to see as expanded a role as Backes will, but he needs to take advantage of any extra time he can get or he may be sent to Providence once others get healthy.