BOSTON, MA --
During the waning minutes of the second period in the Boston Bruin’s 4-3 loss to the Vancouver Canucks, forward Brad Marchand
raced to get a puck that was careening around the boards and braced himself for a hit from defenseman Sami Salo.
The two collided, and Marchand received a five-minute major for clipping and was ejected from the game.
“The puck was going around the boards and I went to pick it up and was kind of looking over my shoulder,” Marchand said. “I saw Salo coming in and I just kind of went down.
"It was unfortunate he got injured. I did go under him, but I felt the base contact was at about his hip point and that’s usually a pretty legal hit from what I’ve seen in the past.”
Marchand said he’s unsure if the league will suspend him or not, but he said he believes there will be a hearing with the NHL tomorrow.
“I had no intention of hurting Salo on the play,” Marchand said. “He’s a very big body coming in on me – I’m not the biggest guy – and in a situation like that, I have no idea what he’s going to do and I’m just trying to protect myself.”
After the game, Head Coach Claude Julien defended Marchand
, and said that he tells his players that they need to protect themselves.
“I think in this league nowadays with the size and strength of guys, everybody has to protect themselves,” Marchand said in response to Julien’s comment. “Different guys do it in different ways, and in the game like last night when there was a lot of emotions and guys were running around a bit, you’re definitely watching over your shoulder a little bit more and you definitely want to protect yourself as much as you can.
“When a guy is coming in on you, you have no idea what his intentions are and what the outcome is going to be, so you’re just trying to look out for yourself in that situation.”
Marchand was involved in a similar play with Daniel Sedin during last year’s Stanley Cup Final and was not penalized, but he did not disagree with the five minute major that was issued yesterday.
“We had a meeting with [Brendan] Shanahan [earlier this season] and he told us the call on the referee has no impact on a suspension,” Marchand said. “I read the rulebook last night, and it said if a guy’s hurt on a play when a guy goes underneath a guy, it’s a five-minute major. It was the right call – he was hurt and I was ejected from the game.”
Marchand’s early exit was the second trip to the locker room for the Bruins in the game after Milan Lucic
was ejected for leaving the bench illegally (which the NHL rescinded) in the first period during the scrum that ensued in front of Vancouver’s bench.
After Marchand’s major, the Canucks scored two goals on the power play to pick up the win.
“I felt very bad – in a game like that you want to be part of it and it’s a big game for our team and our city and it was a very close game,” Marchand said. “You want to be in those.
“And already being down a guy, I put my team down again and a five-minute penalty.
"They scored two goals on the power play and it cost us the game, so that’s a pretty big punishment in a game like that. It was tough.”---Anthony Gulizia