Bruins rookie forward Bard Marchand is starting to become one of those players you hate, unless he’s on your team in which case you love the guy.
There’s no doubt Marchand is a bit of a punk, but he certainly fits the role of a “big bad bruin”, well at 5-foot-9-inches, you can take away the big part.
His timely scoring, and agitating style of play certainly has made him a fan favorite here in Boston.
Marchand a sixth round draft pick in 2006 surprisingly burst onto the scene for the Bruins this season, his first in the NHL.
The rookie scored 21 times while adding 20 assists, and found chemistry playing alongside Mark Recchi and Patrice Bergeron.
Playing in his first career Stanley Cup Playoffs, Marchand hasn’t skipped a beat. No. 63’s 15 points is good enough to tie Michael Ryder for fourth on the Bruins in playoff points, but it’s not just the goals and assists that Marchand brings to the table
Marchand has been setting the tone with his physical play and has done a great job during the finals to get under the skin of the Canucks, just ask the Sedins.
During the early stages of the Bruins 4-0 Game 4 win Marchand hopped over the boards for a defensive zone faceoff. On his way to lineup next to Henrik Sedin, the pesky forward threw a bit of a shoulder at Henrik.
With no retaliation from Henrik, Marchand went to hit Henrik with a little slash, Henrik would come back with one his own, and the two would exchange slashes till the puck was dropped.
Unnecessary, yeah, but that’s the way Marchand is, and the type of stuff that makes him who he is.
Late in the third and the Bruins up 4-0, Marchand was at it again.
Marchand and Canucks defensemen Christian Ehrhoff were racing into the corner chasing after a loose puck. Ehrhoff had position on Marchand and the puck, so Marchand extended his arm and took down Ehrhoff.
Marchand was nailed with two-minutes for tripping, but that didn’t stop Daniel Sedin from going after Marchand prior to him touching the puck.
Seeing Sedin coming, Marchand bent down sending Sedin flying over his back, being within inches from the boards, it was a dangerous play by Marchand.
The Canucks took exception to this and went after Marchand, but before anyone could a hand on him, his gloves were on the ice and Marchand was ready to dance.
Marchand says he was just trying to protect himself.
“I tried to jump over Ehrhoff there and clipped him with my arm and Sedin tried to take a ride on me and that would have been a cheap hit. I already had a penalty against me and so I just ducked on him and saw Ballard coming.”
Bruins fourth-line-grinder Shawn Thornton was asked about Marchand, his answer was simple.
“If I played against him, I’d want to kill him”
Luckily for Marchand, he and Thornton won’t be playing against each other any time soon