Updates from Thursday, April 17
David Backes will play in Thursday's series opener (via the Blackhawks and Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun Times):
Hitchcock: Lines at morning skate will be lines tonight. Oshie and Berglund will not play in Game 1.— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) April 17, 2014
Blues lines: Ott-Backes-Steen, Schwartz-Sobotka-Tarasenko, Morrow-Roy-Reaves, Porter-Lapierre-Cracknell. #Blackhawks— Mark Lazerus (@MarkLazerus) April 17, 2014
Updates from Wednesday, April 16
The St. Louis Blues have updated David Backes' status:
David Backes and Vladimir Sobotka are participating in today's practice. #WeAllBleedBlue— St. Louis Blues (@StLouisBlues) April 16, 2014
Hitchcock: "Don't read anything into our roster today. We are literally going to be game-time decisions every day for a little while here."— St. Louis Blues (@StLouisBlues) April 16, 2014
Backes later spoke about the injury and his recovery (via Lou Korac of NHL.com):
Backes: "I feel good. This is playoffs. This is what we play all year for. Getting up for these games shouldn't be at issue." #stlblues— Lou Korac (@lkorac10) April 16, 2014
David Backes: "Skate today, skate in the morning and be ready for real action tomorrow night." #stlblues— Lou Korac (@lkorac10) April 16, 2014
Updates from Tuesday, April 15
Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has the latest on David Backes:
As the whistle begins practice, no sign of Backes or Sobotka. #stlblues— Jeremy Rutherford (@jprutherford) April 15, 2014
The St. Louis Blues will be heading into the NHL postseason with the status of one of their offensive stars up in the air, as David Backes will miss the remainder of the regular season with a foot injury.
Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported the news on Thursday:
The Blues will be without captain David Backes tonight against Minnesota and perhaps for the final three games of the regular season.
Backes is wearing a walking boot after being hit in the left foot on a shot by teammate Alexander Steen in the second period of a 4-1 loss to Washington.
Backes played one more shift before heading to the team's locker room; he did not return. The Blues had not commented on the seriousness of the injury until today.
Rutherford also spoke to both Backes and Blues head coach Ken Hitchcock, as he shared on Twitter:
Backes, who is wearing a boot on his foot, politely declined comment on his injury. #stlblues— Jeremy Rutherford (@jprutherford) April 10, 2014
Hitch on Backes: "He is going to be out for potentially three games and then play." #stlblues— Jeremy Rutherford (@jprutherford) April 10, 2014
While Backes appears as though he'll be back for the playoffs, the Blues are now currently without both him and Vladimir Tarasenko. Combined, the two players have registered 100 points, with Backes second on the team with 27 goals, while Tarasenko has contributed 21.
Tarasenko did practice on Monday, however, according to Lou Korac of NHL.com:
Tarasenko is also on the ice. #stlblues— Lou Korac (@lkorac10) April 7, 2014
Tarasenko's injury was originally slated to keep him out six weeks, so his return seems far from imminent.
The Blues have struggled at times to score goals this year, so getting both players back as quickly as possible in the playoffs will be vital for the team. The Blues are one of the strongest teams in the NHL at 111 points, tops in the Central Division, so anything less than a trip to the Stanley Cup will be disappointing.
Thankfully, it appears Backes will be good to go in time. The Blues will certainly need his goal-scoring abilities.