Notes: Marchand back, and ready to contribute


Notes: Marchand back, and ready to contribute

By Joe Haggerty

WILMINGTON Brad Marchand has done his time after hitting R.J. Umberger with an elbow to the back of his head, and is ready to return to the Bruins lineup after his two-game suspension.

Marchand has experienced a rocky past couple of weeks: taking key penalties late in games, getting benched in the third period against the Islanders after one ill-timed interference call, and finally dropping the elbow on Umberger.

The 22-year-old winger admitted some of the penalties and other extracurricular activity might have something to do with Marchand being stuck on 19 goals for over three weeks. Marchand and Patrice Bergeron had formed an offensively potent combo with Mark Recchi for the last couple of months, but the well has gone dry just as the team lost six of their last seven games.

There was definitely some frustration . . . especially with some of the penalties as of late. Its been out of my character as of late. I think Ive gotten out of my routine a bit and the bad penalties are creeping in a bit, admitted Marchand. Its frustrating when youre getting chances, you go into a little bit of a slump, and the team starts losing. It all kind of gets frustrating, and I might have reacted in the wrong way. Maybe the suspension had something to do with that, but now I can change it all around. I can do things the smart way.

The offensive slump has bugged Marchand a bit, but he felt that stepping away from the NHL action for a couple of games allowed him to hit the reset button along with the rest of the team.

I cant wait to get back and play. Its always frustrating to sit there and watch in a situation like that, said Marchand. Its tough to watch even when youre winning, but when youre losing that makes it even tougher. It was a bad situation, but its very exciting to get back.

I didnt mean to do it. With our game there are always going to be things that guys dont mean to do. I think we saw that with Patric Hornqvist on Tyler Seguin, too. But plays like that happen, and I cant let that affect my game. I have to play my game, but also be smart about it and watch what Im doing.

Its expected Marchand will be reunited with Bergeron and Recchi Tuesday night against the New Jersey Devils, and will be looking for that elusive 20th goal of the season in his rookie campaign.

Several sources inside the Bruins dressing room confirmed that Tuukka Rask did indeed start screaming and flailing his arms in the direction of Dennis Seidenberg after Torontos fifth goal of the night. Rask approached Seidenberg almost immediately to apologize for the action, and Tim Thomas was brought into the game for the third period.

Claude Julien said Shane Hnidy continues to skate with the rest of the Bruins team while rehabbing from a shoulder injury and has been placed on injured reserve until hes fully cleared to play.

Nathan Horton didnt want to recount much from his Saturday night dust-up with Dion Phaneuf at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, but seemed to insinuate hed reached his boiling point with the entire evening.

Its done with. Its in the past, said Horton. Were just getting ready for Tuesday.

Joe Haggerty can be reached at Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

Saturday, Jan. 21: McKenzie on Julien's job security

Saturday, Jan. 21: McKenzie on Julien's job security

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while proud of my wife and daughter participating in today’s Women’s March.

*This is from a few days ago, but Bob McKenzie weighing in on the prospects for Claude Julien and his job security is always worth checking out.  

*The New York Rangers have themselves a rookie named Pavel that’s doing a pretty darned good job for the Blueshirts.

*What should the St. Louis Blues do with Kevin Shattenkirk as the trade deadline approaches and the seven-year, $49 million contract waiting for him in free agency is pretty daunting?

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Kevin Allen has a list of underperforming NHL stars, including Jamie Benn and Jonathan Toews, that may have been impacted by the World Cup of Hockey. Certainly Patrice Bergeron could have made this list as well.

*Blackhawks backup goalie Scott Darling may be earning some more playing time after the way he performed against the Bruins, according to Pro Hockey Talk.

*Good news with Ottawa Senators goalie Craig Anderson set to return to the team in a couple of weeks after tending to his wife in a battle against cancer.

*The struggles of Anthony Duclair with the Arizona Coyotes mirror the team’s issues this season as well. It’s interesting that Duclair has popped up in trade rumors with the Desert Dogs this season.

*For something completely different: the final Wolverine movie with Hugh Jackman is going to be extremely emotional with its characters.


Both Millers missing from Bruins practice, but trending toward return

Both Millers missing from Bruins practice, but trending toward return

BRIGHTON, Mass – While both Kevan Miller and Colin Miller were missing from Bruins practice on Saturday morning, both injured Bruins defensemen could be rejoining the team soon.

Colin Miller skated on his own prior to Saturday’s team practice at Warrior Ice Arena for the second or third time since suffering a lower body injury in the win over the St. Louis Blues. Claude Julien said his presence on the ice was proof that the puck-moving defenseman is “definitely on the mend”, and could be nearing a return to practice soon with Sunday marking the sixth straight game that he’ll have missed.

Kevan Miller is out with a concussion suffered last weekend in the win over the Philadelphia Flyers, and the B’s current three-game losing streak has coincided with his absence from the lineup.

Julien said Miller has actually been away from the team for the last couple of days while dealing with a virus, and that his recovery from the concussion symptoms was good prior to being knocked down by the illness.

“Kevan was actually feeling really well and then he got hit by a virus that’s kept him in bed for the last two days,” said Julien. “It’s nothing to do with his original injury. There was a possibility he could have been ready very soon, but that’s set him back a bit.”

Both are obviously out for Sunday’s matinee against the Penguins, but a return to practice at some point next week seems like a good bet for both players. Here are the line combos and defense pairings from Saturday’s practice with the Bruins focusing on getting a good result in Pittsburgh with the hockey club on a “mom’s trip” with 22 of the players’ mothers traveling with the team to and from the game: