Marchand's been a broken record in postseason

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Marchand's been a broken record in postseason

By Mary Paoletti
CSNNE.com Staff Reporter Follow @mary_paoletti
BOSTON -- The name is Brad Marchand.

Not Chad. Not Marshmont. It's Brad Marchand.

You'll need to get it right for the record books.

His Game 6 goal in Boston's 5-2 win over Vancouver was his ninth of the postseason and set a Bruins record for most goals by a rookie in a single playoff season. Marchand shot past Mike Krushelnyski (1983) and Bobby Joyce (1988) to earn the honor.

"It's nice," he said. "Obviously, it's a nice little stat to keep in the back of my mind, but that's not what I was going for coming into the playoffs. I just want to help the team win in any way I can. It's nice to contribute."

Not bad for a guy who gets teased.

Like when Canadiens forward Max Pacioretty took a jab via Twitter during the Eastern Conference quarterfinals: "This game is longer than Marchand's nose." (Marchand had a goal and four assists during the series.)

Not bad for a guy who admitted there was a "question mark" surrounding his standing on the team this season.

Remember that more-beer-than-brains radio show caller? "I don't like that Marshmont! Where the hell did he come from anyway?" (He won the Seventh Player Award with 21 goals and 20 assists in 73 games.)

He comes from Hammond Plains, Nova Scotia and is making his way toward a Stanley Cup.

"He's been a big part of our team taking that step to get to this point," said teammate Milan Lucic. "He's scored a lot of big goals."

So far, there's none bigger than the one he scored in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup finals.

Boston skated out Monday night with a noose around its neck. Vancouver had a 3-2 series lead; there would be no more second chances. The media hounded both teams with one particular detail of the series: First team to score wins. Every time.

Lucic had conceded the point before Game 5.

"So far, that first goal's been huge and it seems like it's been a big one. For us, back home we've been kind of able to gain momentum off it, and so have they. I think our record speaks for itself when we score the first goal . . . So it's going to be key."

It was. The Canucks looked tough off the opening faceoff. The Cup was in the building, or nearby at least, and they could smell blood. They were skating hard, poised to strike the killing blow.

But Boston struck first. Mark Recchi got the puck on a strong forecheck and shuttled it ahead to Marchand at the blueline. Marchand flew in on the right wing and drilled the back of the net, top shelf, over Roberto Luongo's glove.

It was like taking a nailgun to Luongo's tires. Once Marchand got that first, all-important goal, the pressure turned to inspiration. It took just 35 seconds for Lucic to add another Bruins tally at 6:06. Two-and-a-half minutes later, Andrew Ference made it 3-0.

The Vancouver machine broke down; Luongo was pulled and Cory Schneider came in. Though Boston didn't need more goals, it got two.

Marchand's teammates singled him out as the firestarter.

"It was a huge goal he scored and he emotionally kept on driving for us," veteran Mark Recchi said. "He's such a good kid and it's nice to see him get rewarded but also play an intelligent game tonight. He still played with the edge, but it was on the right side of it."

The Canucks may disagree.

Marchand got slapped with a 10-minute misconduct during the final 30 seconds of regulation for landing left-handed jabs to Daniel Sedin's mug. Most 22-year-olds might be less brazen tossing mittens with Hart Trophy finalists, but Marchand is an equal opportunity antagonist. He's pestered Daniel and his brother Henrik at every opportunity with bumps off the bench, slashes on faceoffs and an ever-moving mouth.

He'll be the first one to say "I shouldn't be doing that stuff" and then do it again the next night.

Recchi, sage as he may be, doesn't try to rein the rookie in.

"He's a young kid that plays on the edge and sometimes the emotions get the best of him," said Recchi. "But when you're young, that's not a bad thing. I would rather have a kid like that than a kid that plays with no emotion. It's a big part of his game and he's learning.

"He's learning to corral it when he needs to and when we need a lift, he's learned to go out and do it. That's the sign of a smart, young player who wants to get better and better."

A record-setting rookie season is a good place to start. But Brad Marchand has only just begun to make a name for himself.

Mary Paoletti can be reached at mpaoletti@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Mary on Twitter at http:twitter.comMary_Paoletti

Bruins coaches: Czarnik a ‘Belichick-type hockey player’

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Bruins coaches: Czarnik a ‘Belichick-type hockey player’

BOSTON – Austin Czarnik is off to a good start at Bruins training camp.

He’s got points in each of the first two exhibition games and just the fact that he’s cracked the B’s lineup in both games tells you that the coaching staff wants to get a long, good look at the undersized forward.

But the 5-foot-9, 167-pound Czarnik brings more than simply a touch of the Napoleon complex after always being told that he was too small to make it to the elite levels of hockey. The 23-year-old clearly can score after posting 20 goals and 61 points in his first pro season in the AHL in Providence last season. He plays with heart, energy and a dogged determination when he’s hunting pucks on the fore-check.

But former P-Bruins head coach and current B’s assistant coach Bruce Cassidy says that Czarnik also brings something a little extra that New England Patriots fans will certainly appreciate.

“As far as being a player goes, he would be, to me, that [Bill] Belichick-type player that you could use in a lot of different situations,” said Cassidy, in clear reference to intelligent utility guys Troy Brown, Danny Woodhead, Julian Edelman and others that all filled different roles in their time with New England.

“He’s got a very, very high IQ, he’s a quick learner and very coachable,” Cassidy said. “So, he’s a guy you can move around, and he can play with different players. He can play on the penalty kill, he’s good on the power play and especially on the point.

“So there are a lot of different things. I think from night-to-night if you wanted to, you could move him around in your lineup and he could be effective for you. I know he’s a center, but it would be interesting to see if he could play the wing and be effective. That’s something we haven’t really seen. Is that something we maybe attempt down the road? I don’t know. I don’t want to speak out of turn, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he could handle it. He even played for us 6-on-5 as a defenseman with the goalie out. He’s just a smart player, and he understands the game very, very well.”

So, Czarnik is off to a good start in training camp with the Bruins, but we also saw the same thing from him last year as a rookie to pro hockey. 

Now, it’s about seeing whether a smaller player can finish strong as the competition heightens deeper into the preseason, and perhaps he can bring that versatility and feistiness to the NHL level in Boston. 

 

 

Thursday, Sept. 29: Oilers right where they belong

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Thursday, Sept. 29: Oilers right where they belong

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while looking forward to watching the Luke Cage Netflix series.

*The Cult of Hockey has no issues with yours truly ranking the Edmonton Oilers 29th out of 30 teams in my first preseason NHL power rankings.

*An interesting piece about Brian McGrattan and his battle with alcohol in his career as an NHL tough guy. I can honestly say having covered him a bit when he was in the Bruins organization that he was one of the scariest dudes I’ve ever talked to in an NHL dressing room. A nice guy, but very intense and always looked like he definitely enjoyed his work on the ice.

*Dennis Seidenberg hopped on with the Hockey Central crew today to talk about his new contract with the New York Islanders.

*PHT writer and Friend of Haggs (FOH) Mike Halford has Guy Boucher with some serious Dion Phaneuf love going on in Ottawa.

*Jack Eichel is oozing confidence and swagger in his second NHL season with Buffalo looking to make a big step up this season.

*Scott Burnside said that the World Cup of Hockey could be coming to an end tonight and I think most predict that it will with a little bit of an anticlimactic thud due to the sheer awesomeness of Team Canada.

*For something completely different: “Aleppo Moment” sounds like a great name for a rock band. Not so much for a Presidential candidate.