“It’s not good enough,” said Marchand, who led the team in goals (18) and points (36) during the shortened regular season. “I have to play better. I have to keep things simple, just shoot the puck more.”
The shots and goals would be nice, but being in the middle of a few scrums or winning a few more battles along the boards would be nicer.
Maybe the problem is there really isn’t any animosity between the teams. Other than Phil Kessel, whom the Bruins sic Chara on every time, there isn’t anybody from Toronto to despise.
It seems those are the kind of guys Marchand likes to pester. And when he’s pestering, he’s usually scoring and assisting, too.
The Bruins, it seems, have a lot going their way.
While the Leafs have the most explosive forwards, the Bruins win most of the battles when the puck is in the Leafs’ end of the ice, leading to many good scoring opportunities.
They are the better team.
But while we like to think they are on track to emulating the team which won the Stanley Cup two years ago, they aren’t even close without Marchand being Marchand.
“Everyone has to be better prepared,” said 5-foot-8, 190-pound Marchand. “Maybe we weren’t prepared for the Leafs and what they brought.”
I have three things to say to that: Look in the mirror. Make something happen. And bring back a little “hate” into your game.
The Bruins’ playoff future may hinge on it.
You can e-mail Bill Burt at email@example.com.
agateHed:Maple Leafs 4, Bruins 1
agate_NHL_line3:Toronto 0 1 1—2
Boston 0 0 1—1
agateText bold to dash:First Period - None.
agateText bold to dash:Second Period - 1, Toronto, Bozak 1, 11:27 (sh).
agateText bold to dash:Third Period - 2, Toronto, MacArthur 2, 1:58. 3, Boston, Chara 1 (Krejci, Seidenberg), 11:12.
agateText bold to dash:Shots on Goal - Toronto 19-10-4 - 33. Boston 8-17-19 - 44.
agateText bold to dash:Goalies - Toronto, Reimer. Boston, Rask. A - 17,565 (17,565). T - 2:34.