Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand was fined for tripping Detroit Red Wings defenceman Niklas Kronwall last Tuesday. He was fined the maximum allowed under the terms of the most recent collective bargaining agreement.
Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand has become a solid scorer for the Black and Gold these last few seasons. He’s also been known for making some truly questionable plays. Marchand found himself in hot water again with the league when the Bruins took on the Red Wings last Tuesday.
Marchand came up behind Niklas Kronwall and knocked over the Red Wings defenceman. He’s been suspended several times in his eight year NHL career. The most recent suspension occurred back in December 2015. His clipping of Ottawa Senators defenceman Mark Borowiecki caused him to miss out on the 2016 NHL Winter Classic.
“I just want to acknowledge the situation that I’ve put my team in for being undisciplined and affecting the game for them (and) taking away the excitement for the fans being a part of this rivalry and taking that away from them; and then also for affecting this game for myself and putting myself in a situation to not be part of this,” said Marchand after missing the Winter Classic. “I want to apologize and I truly am sorry to everyone about the situation, and it was not my intent to make a hit or try and injure anyone on that play.”
Marchand got lucky. The Department of Player Safety has been even more useless than they usually are. Several ugly hits have been ignored by the DoPS. The general feeling was that Marchand was going to get a suspension for the hit on Kronwall. (I honestly thought Marchand was going to get four games for the hit.)
I’ll say it again, Brad Marchand got lucky. Had he been forced to sit for any amount of time, he would have become the first member of the Boston Bruins to have missed both the Winter Classic and the All-Star game due to being suspended.
There are two mitigating factors that saved Marchand from another suspension. The first is the NHL All-Star weekend. The NHL probably didn’t want to suspend someone just before the All-Star break. The other one being Kronwall taking out B’s forward Patrice Bergeron just before Marchand hit him.
Marchand is a veteran presence for the Black and Gold. He’s capable of being an amazing player and is currently the team’s top scorer. He’s been pushing hard for an ‘A’ on his jersey these last two seasons.
Let’s be clear. Brad Marchand is not Matt Cooke. But he’ll never win a Lady Byng either. Marchand has to be more responsible with his play in the future.