By Andrew Thompson Twitter: @godwentwhoops
Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand was suspended for two games for his hit on Tampa blueliner Jake Dotchin. The suspension means the Bruins will be without their top scorer for the remainder of the regular season.
Marchand was considered a repeat offender under the terms of the most recent CBA. The two game suspension will cost the Halifax, Nova Scotia native $109,756.10. (Making it one of the most expensive cup checks in NHL history.) That money will end up going to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
“It was an undisciplined penalty, there’s no question about that, and it could have cost the team a very important game,” said Marchand of his hit of Dotchin. “But the guys did a great job of rallying and having a huge game.”
The Bruins went on to win that game 4-0. The victory helped Boston clinch their first trip to the postseason in three years.
Marchand could have been the first Bruins player to have a 40 goal season in 14 years. Now, he’ll have to sit out two important games because he let his temper run away from him (again). It’s actions like this that keep NHL fans in general from seeing what an elite player the 28-year old Marchand is.
Now the Bruins will have to carry on without Marchand as they take on the Ottawa Senators and the Washington Capitals in the final two games of the regular season. Bruce Cassidy will have to make moves to replace Marchand in the top line, and with his absence another Bruins forward will have to step up and fill that hole.
“If it does happen [that we’re without Brad], I think it’s about doing what we did last night when we lost him,” offered Patrice Bergeron about how the B’s will handle the game without Marchand. “It’s everyone stepping up and I thought everyone did a good job of staying with it and being positive and doing our job, so that’s how we have to approach it.”
Marchand won’t be the only player off the ice for Boston tonight. Frank Vatrano, Tim Schaller, and Jimmy Hayes were all questionable yesterday. None of them may be able to play and that will certainly make it harder for Boston.
A Bruins win would give the B’s the second slot in the Atlantic. The puck drops at 7:05 at the TD Garden.