Boston’s MVP Brad Marchand will miss the Winter Classic, plus two more games after a low and dangerous hit to Ottawa’s Mark Borowiecki. To prove that I don’t care who the hit is on I’ll admit that this is my third article on the subject in three hours and I still had to look up Borowiecki’s first name every time.
3 games is ok for a first offender, but I’m surprised it was so few considering he had been suspended before for 5 games for basically the exact same thing. I was expecting 5-7 games. I can live with the 3 games but it does bring up a potentially disastrous situation. Marchand’s first game back will be January 9 against none other than the Ottawa Senators. If the league learned anything from the Todd Bertuzzi incident it should be that players have long memories. Any incident coming out of a rematch following a suspension should be anticipated. Here the league had a chance to take the responsibility out of the hands of the players and keep Marchand out for an easily justifiable 4 games, avoiding potential revenge scenarios. The Bruins don’t play the Sens again until April 9. Instead, the league is essentially throwing Marchand into a fire conveniently being lit on a Saturday night, which in case it wasn’t clear is fairly big for NHL television ratings. Marchand isn’t one to back down which is part of what makes him a great player, and I’ll be hard pressed to not side with him if an altercation does occur.