In the first month of the season, many Bruins fans were wondering when Jarome Iginla would score his first goal of the season. During that time, Brad Marchand was also going through a slow start to the 2013-14 season.
Fast forward a month later. Iginla now has three goals on the season and is a caviar along with Milan Lucic and David Krejci on the Bruins’ top line. Marchand, on the other hand, is still slumping.
Despite the slump, the “little ball of hate” had an extra step in his game Tuesday night when his old friend Tyler Seguin and the Dallas Stars paid a visit to the TD Garden. Marchand, nor the slumping Bruins – losers of four of their last five – came on the wrong end of things, but the fourth-year forward showed some positive signs in the 3-2 shootout loss.
Marchand, who has four points on the season, fired three quality shots and delivered two hits in 16:07 of ice time Tuesday night. He may not have compiled a point, but, at times he was getting back to basics and being the pest that Bruins fans love to see.
It wasn’t all perfect for Marchand, though. He did commit a couple of turnovers that led to some scoring chances the other way, especially during the second period where the Stars outshot the Bruins, 13-4. But it wasn’t all that bad, either.
The return of Loui Eriksson to the B’s second line also helped Marchand. While Eriksson was still rusty, Marchand was able to provide the line with energy. He battled well in the corners and set Eriksson and Bergeron up with some scoring chances.
Not bad for a line that hasn’t been together since Oct 23rd, when John Scott delivered the nasty cheap shot to Eriksson.
“I definitely felt a little more confident making plays down there. I felt back in sync with Bergy and I felt good with Loui there,” Marchand said about skating with his fellow line mates. “So definitely a step in the right direction, but I still got to clean up in a few areas.”
The only way for Marchand to cope with the early season slump is to stay positive. And, eventually, like Iginla earlier in the year, the goals should come in bunches.
“Everything’s not going to go right in one night,” said Marchand, who hasn’t scored a goal since Oct. 5th in a 4-1 win over the Red Wings. “It’s a slow process and you’ve got to make sure you stay positive through it all. But hopefully I can get it back on track soon.”