TORONTO — Brad Marchand made it through the night, but it was a night full of bumps and bruises for the Bruins’ gritty left winger.
With 6:30 gone in the second period, the Little Ball of Hate tripped over Toronto goaltender James Reimer and crashed into the end boards — only seconds before the Bruins put their second goal into the net.
However, the goal was immediately waved off, the referee explaining to Bruins coach Claude Julien that he had stopped play because Reimer was not able to right himself after the collision with Marchand. The ref, however, neglected to blow the whistle to stop play before the puck went in the net, which initially had the Bruins feeling the goal should have counted.
Marchand, who appeared to suffer a shoulder injury in the fall, reported to the dressing room for a short time, but soon returned to take his regular shift with linemates Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin. However, Marchand did not return for the third period.
“I fell on the boards weird,’’ Marchand said during a between-periods interview with Hockey Night in Canada. “It gave me a bit of a sting there. I’m all right.’’
Gregory Campbell, normally the fourth-line center, filled in for Marchand at left wing during the third period.
Julien explained after the game that Marchand could have continued to play but the coach opted to shut him down for the night after an evaluation by the training staff between periods.
“He could have played in a pinch,’’ said Julien. “He wanted to keep going, but we don’t want to lose players long term. We are going to be cautious with our guys.’’
Marchand was not made available to the media after the game.
Jamie Tardif figured he was on a faster track than the one that delivered him here Saturday night, making his NHL debut with the Bruins nearly 10 years after the Calgary Flames made him the 112th pick in the 2003 draft.
“I was hoping my chance would have come a couple of years ago,’’ said Tardif, a rash of recent injuries to the Bruins roster finally leading him to get his name on an NHL game sheet. “But I am thankful for the chance.’’
Tardif, 28, was called to duty when the Bruins lost trusty forwards Shawn Thornton and Daniel Paille to head injuries in Thursday’s 7-4 loss to the Sabres. Tardif made his debut on what is usually the Bruins’ fourth line, centered by Campbell, and with another Providence farmhand, Lane MacDermid, on right wing. Tardif played an uneventful 5:03 in the Bruins’ 1-0 victory.
Paille kept home
Paille did not make the trip from Boston, held back by doctors after taking a high stick under the visor Thursday.
“He’s doing better,’’ noted Julien, who promoted Paille to the third line Thursday, working him at left wing with Chris Kelly and Rich Peverley. “He’s progressing. It’s a day-to-day situation. We left him [in Boston] because doctors wanted to be cautious — and we’ve talked about being a little more cautious in a shortened season.’’
Thornton, meanwhile, suffered a concussion in his brief dustup Thursday with Sabres strongman John Scott.
General manager Peter Chiarelli said Friday that Thornton is expected to be sidelined 7-10 days, but recovery from a concussion has proven difficult to project.