Boston Bruins winger Brad Marchand will not appeal his six-game suspension, he returned from Thursday, any further. For now, the team’s leader in assists and points is focused on returning to the Bruins’ dressing room and playing hockey.
“No, we’re not going to appeal it,” Marchand said after the Bruins’ game-day skate in advance of their first game ever in Seattle against the Kraken Thursday night. “To appeal it essentially just at this point to kind of change it for the future I guess, so it’s not a big a hit against my record, and I guess the money standpoint. …I think I’m just going to move past it and it is what it is at this point. I gotta accept the decision and just get back to playing.
I miss being around the guys and I miss being part of the group. So, I’m just so excited about that, that I don’t need any of the negative energy that that whole process brings, and just move forward with it.”
This isn’t good from Merchant in the final minute of the game. Punch + stick swing on Jarry pic.twitter.com/yrq9Ek8o4i
— Brady Trettnero (@BradyTrett) February 9, 2022
Two days after Marchand’s second suspension of the season was handed down, the Boston Bruins winger did not pull any punches when asked for his take on whether his actions warranted sitting out for six games.
“Was it stupid? Of course, it was stupid,” Brad Marchand said on February 11. “I’m not denying that. I absolutely should not have done it. Purpose suspension-worthy? I don’t think so. So, again, that’s we’re in the moment, if I would’ve thought that I was getting suspended, yeah, I wouldn’t have done it. Especially if I thought I was going to get six games. That’s the part of it that gets tough sometimes, is to know where the line is. It changes for each player and from each night.
[Those] plays were not going to insult Jarry. No potential injury on that play. He was very well protected. The fact that it’s six games is based on history, not on the play. We believe the last suspension was very hefty when I got three games. It should have been one, based on the fact that I’ve turned my game around and become a pretty good player in this league. But you’re not going to escape the history part of it, which ultimately set me up for this [suspension].”
On Thursday, Marchand was asked whether or not he still felt disrespected by the Department of Player Safety after his appeal process?
“I respect where they come from,” Marchand replied. “At the end of the day, we wanted to go through the process as part of the rights that we have as a player once you hit that point. So, we figured, it may as while being worth it; there’s nothing to lose at that point and I wanted to kind of get a better understanding of where they were coming from. How they got to their decision because we felt like it was a little excessive. Not just this one but the last one as well. So we wanted to – again – just hear them out, figured it would be a good opportunity to get face to face and again, learn it all, and have a conversation with them. I do at the end of the day, accept it and respect it, and just gotta move forward.”
So will the pesky Boston Bruins winger steer clear of scrums and after the whistle shenanigans that happen frequently in NHL games?
“I’m not going to look into it too much,” Marchand explained. “I’ve done a great job over the last few years reigning everything in. If I would’ve thought that that was going to result in a suspension, that situation would’ve gone a whole lot differently. That was the impression that I was in, that stuff like that happens a lot in hockey. A lot of punches are thrown around the league and throughout the game. …there was one very shortly after that with Kane and Lemieux. So again, that’s part of hockey and I didn’t expect it to get to where it went to. So I’m not gonna look too much into the outcome of it.”
That being said, both suspensions this season have reminded Marchand just how slim the margin of error and judgment is for a player like him that remains under the watchful eyes of officials and the NDPS.
“Obviously, I think what I’m taking away from this is my threshold is very low right now,” Marchand acknowledged. “So I really just have to stay away from anything at all, which I can do. I’ve been able to do it for a number of years now. And again, it’s just wrapping my mind around that and accepting it, whether you agree with it or not, and moving forward within the rules that I now understand are set for me.”