The Bruins came into the offseason looking to retool and reload a declining roster. While defense has been a huge disappointment the last two seasons, one of the biggest problems the B’s have had recently is the lack of intensity and focus from the team during games, especially important ones. This lack of toughness was apparent towards the end of this season as the Bruins seemed to be safely in the playoff structure with weeks left in the season. The B’s seemed to be going in the right direction to change that on July 1st when they signed former St.Louis Blues captain, David Backes to a 5 year $30 million dollar contract. In terms of toughness and intensity, there’s was no better guy the B’s could’ve signed. Backes plays hard, is not afraid to go to the dirty areas and is a leader in the locker room. The Bruins have lacked a true outspoken leader in their room since losing Shawn Thornton and Andrew Ference in free agency two and three years ago, respectively. Those were the types of guys that would get on other players if they weren’t playing well and would simply play hard. The Bruins have had too many players recently that just coast through games and don’t play as hard as they should. Backes will bring back that fire that the Bruins need desperately. Obviously there are some issues with this signing as the B’s didn’t improve their defensive unit and chose to go out and get a 32 year-old who plays a very physical game and could be an injury risk. However, since Backes become an NHL regular he has never missed more than 10 games in a season. He honestly has shown no signs of slowing down as he regularly puts up 20 plus goals per season. Obviously he’s not a scorer but having him potentially be a third-line center would give the B’s great depth down the middle with Patrice Bergeron and assuming he doesn’t get traded, David Krejci. He also does have the ability to play the wing on the first or second line. His versatility will be crucial for a team that has lacked depth . As much as Backes is 32, I think he is worth the risk for a B’s team that has lacked focus and intensity for the better part of two seasons. The Bruins definitely do need to improve their defense a lot further than they have this offseason, but signing David Backes is definitely a step in the right direction.