Bruins

Why Brad Marchand didn’t retaliate after a high-stick to the nose

"We got out of there with two points and a big win."

Brad Marchand skates with a cut on his nose during Monday's Bruins-Capitals game. AP

Brad Marchand wrote the latest chapter of his nose-face killer diaries during Monday’s Bruins-Capitals matchup.

With the B’s trailing 2-0 late in the first period, an aggressive forecheck by Nic Dowd went haywire after he caught Marchand with a high stick to the nose. Marchand confirmed during his Zoom call with the media on Wednesday that he received five or six stitches.

Yet, he’s thankful to avoid a trip to the dentist.

“I’m just happy that it wasn’t my teeth,” Marchand said with a smile. “I can deal with a broken nose, but missing these beautiful teeth of mine, that would’ve hurt.”

Dowd earned a four-minute double minor after drawing blood. Marchand responded not with a fight, but in another area that hurt the Caps.

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Boston’s veteran winger opened the floodgates late in the first period of the team’s 7-3 win after notching a goal and an assist during a 5-on-3 and 5-on-4 power play. His leadership showcased another layer of Marchand’s growth and maturity over his decade-plus-long career donning the spoked B.

“I can’t speak to whether I would’ve [retaliated],” Marchand said. “I guess I’m happy that I just stayed in it and didn’t do anything dumb. We got out of there with two points and a big win. Really at the end of the day, that’s all that matters.”

“We know what he’s all about. We’ve seen in his compete level in practice, games, optional skate, morning skate…you name it. He’s a competitive guy when he puts he skates on,” Cassidy said of Marchand following Monday’s win. “I think it demoralizes the other team a little bit. Their line did a good job on them earlier — that Dowd line. But we kept coming, and we’re able to get a 5-on-3 goal. I think it settled us down and got us back in the game, and then March’s goal goes off the stick. So good for us for sticking with the plan. It got us back in the game and we were pretty good after that.”

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Marchand, Cassidy, and the rest of the Bruins carry a 5-1 mark over their last six games heading into their second matchup of the season with the rival Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday. They could very well have another veteran in the lineup with Tuukka Rask’s return coming as early as Thursday against the Philadelphia Flyers.

With a familiar face back in the fold, a stitched-up Marchand senses bigger things ahead.

“It’s nice to know that he’s at the end of the line here and he’s going to play again soon,” Marchand said of Rask. “It’s unfortunate for Sway [Jeremy Swayman] being in a numbers game. But Tuukks is obviously an incredible goalie and has been for a very long time in this league. So, I’m happy for him that it all worked out and he’s recovered the way he has. And there’s no doubt he’s going to help our team. He’s been one of the best goalies in the league for the last 10-15 years, and we’re lucky he’s back again this year.”

The only thing that could stop Marchand at this rate is a milk crate toss from Rask. But with four balanced scoring lines and more depth in net, the Bruins, with games in hand on everyone ahead of them in the Eastern Conference playoff race, hope to stick their nose toward a higher seed.

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