Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand netted his 36th goal of the season on Wednesday, placing him in sole possession of first place in the NHL for scoring.
Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand was one of the bright spots for the team last season. His 37 goal, 61 point performance seemed to be a tough feat to top. Apparently Boston’s ‘Little Ball of Hate’ didn’t get that particular memo. The 28-year forward is blazing a path through opposing teams this year.
Marchand put up his 36th goal of the season on Wednesday. That goal was served up to him by Calgary Flames (and former Boston Bruins) goaltender Chad Johnson.
That goal puts Brad Marchand into the top spot for goal scorers this season. In the last few years, the Bruins have had players start off in high positions, only to fade. This is the first time in quite a while we’ve seen a member of the Black and Gold this high up in the standings in March.
It gets even better. Brad Marchand is now tied with Patrick Kane and Connor McDavid for first place in overall points this season. Marchand is now up to 76 points and is well on track for having the 80-point season Causeway Crowd predicted a little while ago. At this point, he might even shock us with a 90-point performance.
At this point of the season, there are only nine players in the league that are keeping up a point a game pace. (David Pastrnak is the closest outside that mark at .98 points a game.) Brad Marchand is sixth with a 1.09 point/game rating. No one among the nine have played more games than Marchand though.
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While Marchand had a decent start to the season he has certainly come alive for Boston in 2017. He’s put up 26 goals for Boston since January 1. He’s also earned a total of 45 points in that time frame. No other player in the NHL has been able to duplicate those numbers.
Marchand is currently the hottest player in hockey. (I’m sure that’s got to annoy the acolytes in the respective churches of Sidney Crosby and Connor McDavid.) His goal production in the month of March equals the entire output of the New Jersey Devils team.
He’s first in goals. Tied for first in points. He’s even tied for ninth place in assists with Phil Kessel. Brad Marchand is now a serious candidate for multiple NHL awards this year. He could even end up as the league’s MVP. While these awards could have serious implications for his career and beyond, Marchand is focusing on the here and now.
“It’s not really in my mind at all,” said Marchand about any postseason superlatives. “It’s more that we’re in a tough spot right now. We’re fighting for our lives. It’s the only thing I’m worrying about.”
The Bruins four game win streak has opened up a bit of breathing room for them. They’ve got a five point advantage over the closest team, the Tampa Bay Lightning. Still, the B’s can’t get complacent. They remember the last-second disappointments of the last two seasons. Marchand and the rest of the team will do all they can to power through to the postseason.