Marchand sent a clear message
There is little doubt among those who wear Black and Gold that Brad Marchand owns the loosest set of lips on the team.
But on Tuesday, when two Blackhawks (Patrick Kane and Troy Brouwer are under suspicion) gave Shawn Thornton too much of a hard time, Marchand was among the first wave of Bruins to not-so-delicately inform them that such behavior would not be tolerated.
“It’s a gutless thing to do, when a guy’s hurt like that and you start chirping him,’’ said Marchand. “We definitely wanted to let them know we weren’t going to accept that.’’
Yesterday, Thornton was bearing the latest result of Fernando Pisani’s errant skate blade to the forehead Tuesday. After Thornton fell forward and sliced himself open on the skate, he required 40-plus stitches to repair the wound. During yesterday’s morning skate, Thornton wore a visor.
“I’m lucky,’’ Thornton said. “I know it could have been worse. It could have been better, too. I could have gotten not kicked in the forehead. I’m aware that a little bit lower and it could have been very dangerous. I try not to dwell on that too much.’’
The shield was not considered enough protection for Thornton to dress last night against Toronto, so team doctors did not clear him for action. Thornton said the concern is over the number of stitches inside the wound. Coach Claude Julien termed Thornton “day to day.’’
The chatter about Chicago’s chirping, however, continued to buzz yesterday. Marchand, along with Patrice Bergeron and Zdeno Chara, were quick to get in the faces of Kane and Brouwer following Thornton’s second-period exit.
Marchand is liberal when it comes to peppering opponents with barbs. But had Pisani’s blade entered Thornton’s face an inch lower, it could have struck his right eye. So considering the close call, Marchand and his teammates believed there was no need for chirping.
“It is disappointing, especially when it’s as severe as it was,’’ Marchand said. “A cut to the face with a skate, those are always very dangerous. You don’t want to joke around about it.
“Guys shooting their mouth off about it, that’s not something you respect or you want to see. At other times, chirping is part of the game. It always will be. But that’s not one of those times.’’
Yesterday, Chicago enforcer John Scott took issue when he was told by Chicago media that Thornton said the Blackhawks chirped a lot.
The Blackhawks took exception to Thornton’s hit on Niklas Hjalmarsson earlier in the game.
“He said that? That’s fine. He can say what he wants,’’ Scott told the Chicago Tribune. “He’s going after some of our littlest guys on our team to start a fight. He’s trying to challenge Pisani to a fight.
“What’s that say about him? He’s Mr. Tough Guy and he’s trying to challenge Pisani. If I’m in the lineup, he’s more than welcome to come chirp at me. I’ll kick the [expletive] out of him.’’
Scott didn’t play against the Bruins Tuesday.
Ryder returns With Thornton unavailable, Michael Ryder took his spot on the fourth line after being a healthy scratch the last two games. Ryder hasn’t scored since Feb. 27, and though his hands may be cold, his game starts with his legs. “When he’s skating, he’s hard to stop,’’ Julien said. Ryder had one shot, two hits, and three takeaways in 12:21 of ice time. Ryder hit the post in the second period. He was the second shooter in the shootout, missing high with a snap shot.
Boychuk rests Steven Kampfer, a healthy scratch for six straight games, was in the lineup last night. Kampfer replaced Johnny Boychuk, who was given a night off. Julien said Shane Hnidy might play tomorrow against Atlanta. Hnidy hasn’t played this season . . . Milan Lucic and Jay Rosehill threw down in a thunderous second-period scrap. Even after they separated, they continued the fight, squaring off like boxers instead of grabbing each other’s jerseys in the traditional manner . . . Ottawa signed former Merrimack star Stephane Da Costa to a two-year contract yesterday. The Bruins had scouted Da Costa heavily.
Fluto Shinzawa can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.