The most irritating man in hockey had returned for the second round of the playoffs after lying relatively dormant in the first, as Bruins forward Brad Marchand is back to inventing petty tricks to get in his opponents’ heads.
Thankfully, this time at least it didn’t involve his tongue. But in overtime of the Bruins’ 3-2 win against the Blue Jackets to open their series, Marchand tried his best to sneakily incapacitate Columbus’s Cam Atkinson by stomping on his stick as the ref dropped the puck. The wood-slicing, as you can see below, was clearly intentional, and was clearly meant to be timed with the face-off so the Bruins could get an offensive zone possession with a half-man advantage. The trickster Marchand was only foiled because Patrice Bergeron got kicked out of the circle.
Atkinson alerted the referee of his busted stick and was given time to skate over to the bench and get a new one. But less than two minutes later, Charlie Coyle ended the game with a tap-in winner. Here’s what Atkinson had to say about it after the game:
Unfortunately, as soon as you have to say, “I’m not going to let it get to me,” Brad Marchand has already done his job. The nine-year Bruins vet is an absolutely amazing two-way forward just judging on his legal plays alone, but for some reason, the mind of a fourth-line pest is stuck inside the body of that 100-point man. He fights guys for celebrating too hard, he tries to lick them when they get too close, and he’s not afraid to go for the dick and balls. Marchand seems to crave this frustrating bullshit even more than he likes to score goals, and with the Bruins somehow now the favorites to win the Cup, you can bet there’s more high-stakes skullduggery to come.