BOSTON -- Brad Marchand took a hard hit off the dasher after a collision with towering Buffalo defenseman Tyler Myers late in the third period, and immediately dropped his stick while skating hunched over toward the bench. Marchand never left the bench area, but he also never returned for the waning moments of Bostons 3-1 win over the Sabres at TD Garden.
That meant Marchand was out of the game for the final four minutes of regulation as his teammates scrambled to protect a two-goal lead with Buffalo pulling the goaltender.
The Bs agitator wasnt spotted after the game in the locker room, but Bruins coach Claude Julien said Marchand was fine following the game. He was ready to jump back into the fray, but Julien opted to drop Chris Kelly onto the Patrice Bergeron line in case there was a face-off and No. 37 was kicked out of the face-off dot.
Some thought the worst given Bostons recent string of bad luck with player injuries, but they dodged any trouble this time around.
Marchand was good to go. There was no issue there and that was a good hit. I think he was just a little stung by it and came back to the bench. But then he was good to go, said Julien. It wasnt anything to do with the hit, in case you were wondering about concussions.
He was ready to go if he didnt skate another shift. It was near the end of the game with about four minutes left. I ended up putting Kelly out there as another centerman to take the draw in case Bergy Bergeron got kicked out. Marchand never did get a chance but he wouldve been ready to go.
Overall the Little Ball of Hate was a little too quiet against the Sabres in victory and finished with only a single shot on net in 15:10 of ice time before getting parked on the pine for the final four minutes of the game.