The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports Columns

November 12, 2013

Shane Frederick column: Backes is one of sports' good guys


“Without that donation, I don’t know what we would have done,” said Jim Steiert, MAHA vice president and fundraising chair. “It was complete pandemonium on the ice. It was the greatest thing I’ve ever seen.”

Try Hockey For Free participants who signed up for the season were supplied with new gear they can use for the year, and MAHA was also able to replenish its equipment room with up-to-date supplies.

“It’s a struggle to get some kids outfitted,” Steiert said. “That’s part of the experience.”

According to the MAHA website (, they ordered 150 sticks, 70 pairs of skates, 60 helmets, 60 pairs of gloves, six full sets of goaltending gear, 1,000 pucks and more from the hockey company Bauer with Backes’ donation.

Steiert said Backes donated $12,000 in Bauer gear but at cost. It would have cost the association double that amount to purchase all of that equipment on its own.

So when you hear about the locker room problems of the Miami Dolphins, the dysfunctional relationships of the Dallas Cowboys or the not-so-natural performance of a whole bunch of baseball players, don’t completely dismiss the modern-day pro athlete. Think about David Backes and know that there are a few good guys still out there.

Shane Frederick is a Free Press staff writer. Read his blog at and follow him on Twitter @puckato.



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