Most people had focused on how Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton would start the season given that they didnt play in Europe during the 119-day NHL lockout, and wondered if it would affect their first few weeks of the abbreviated regular season.
But Bruins winger Brad Marchand was in the same boat as Lucic and Horton after only skating a couple of times a week during the four-month period players were being locked out of work. The Bs agitator was skating periodically in Boston and Halifax while bouncing back and forth between the two places, but was certainly a question mark heading into training camp.
Some wondered if hed be able to keep up with Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin after those two players both skated in Switzerland, but its fair to say all of those questions have been answered. Marchand, along with Lucic, leads the Bruins with two goals scored after two games, and has the teams only power play goals through the first three games of the season.
Were happy with the way things are progressing on the power play, said Marchand. We just need to keep working at it.
The Nose Face Killahs coach is of the belief that Marchands 5-foot-9, 183-pound is one of the things that allowed him to leap into the action without trouble. His top skating speed and willingness to throw his body into the battle areas havent hurt matters either.
The only thing I said about guys like Marchand is that theyre smaller, and they seem to be able to catch up a lot quicker. They dont have as much body mass to carry around, said Claude Julien. We werent as concerned about Brad as we were about our bigger bodies. They were the biggest challenge and theyve answered the call.
Brad is a guy that has always been in pretty good shape and we know hes pretty dynamic in his own way. His preparation to games and his conditioning was good enough that he seems like he hasnt missed a beat.
Marchand is like most of the Bruins after an encouraging three-game start in that they havent missed a beat at all.