BOSTON, Mass. --
After signing a new deal with Boston on Wednesday, Brad Marchand
will remain in Black & Gold.
"It took a little while but I'm very happy to have signed Brad to two years," said Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli via conference call. "He was a terrific performer in the playoffs, a clutch performer and just loves to play, plays on the edge and we're really excited to have him with the Bruins for two more years.
"I told Brad today that at the end of last year he told me he was going to score twenty goals and he scored more than that and I told him I was proud of him and he deserves it.
"He's a good kid and we're happy to have him in the mix."
Marchand is happy to remain in the mix.
"I was very, very excited to get this over with and now I have the opportunity to focus on camp," said the forward. "I know it took a little while over the summer, but you know, the whole summer long we were focusing on hockey and I'm very excited and very prepared for this season and very proud to be back in a Bruins uniform."
Despite the length of the negotiations, it seems clear that Marchand had no desire to be elsewhere.
"I didn't think that it would get to that stage," said Chiarelli. "Brad's always told me that he wants to be here and be part of the Bruins...and I had a feeling it would get done.
"It's nice to finish this business before camp because you fall behind in camp and it's hard to catch up."
But Marchand, who has attended Zdeno Chara
' captain's practices prior ot camp had no intention of missing time.
"Yeah, from the get-go, I never was going to miss a day of camp. I never wanted that," said the Nova Scotia native. "I wanted to be here first day. I wanted to show them all I wanted to be here and go through the whole camp with the guys and be part of the team.
"I'm very happy that it didn't have to come down to that and we were able to get the deal done before camp. You know again, now we can move forward."
And moving forward, Marchand thinks he can improve on his 21-20-41 totals from last season.
"There's always room for every player to improve," he said. "I think a big part that I still want to improve is my defensive game. You know you watch guys like Bergy [Patrice Bergeron
] and Krech [David Krejci
] and you know they're a couple of the top guys on our team and in the league and they're so defensively strong, so that's another big area I want to continue to improve on.
"But you can always improve every area of your game."
For Marchand, who plays on the edge another year of experience may help him maintain control.
"I feel like throughout the year I got better at controlling my emotions," he said. "There was times in playoffs where they got the best of me, but you know, for the most part the coaching staff did a great job at leading me in the right direction.
"I'm still a young player, I'm still trying to learn, so you know, that's all part of the game... and I just want to get better all around.
"You want to work towards being the best player and to do that you got to fix- you got to continually work on every area of the game so that's a goal," he said.
For the Bruins, the goal hasn't changed.
"I know around the room we all definitely agree that we have a great opportunity again this year," said Marchand. "Everyone's very excited.
"You know, we've only lost a couple of guys but [Benoit] Pouliot and [Joe] Corvo have come in, they're both great players and from what it looks like in camp there's a lot of great young guys that are going to be battling for spots.
"So we have a great opportunity again this year and again we are going to have to come in and make sure that we don't take it for granted and think that it's going to be easy because we won last year," said Marchand. "The way it looks, everybody's very hungry and I do believe that we have a great opportunity again this year."