BOSTON - Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand was given a five-minute major, a game misconduct and was ejected for spearing Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Jake Dotchin in the groin at 19:20 of the first period Tuesday night at TD Garden. Kyle Turris has had the hot stick against the Bruins, with three goals in three games.
The Tampa Bay Lightning look to stay alive in the race for a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference when they begin a three-game road trip Tuesday against the Boston Bruins.
Like the Lightning, the Senators - who are in the midst of a five-game losing skid - are also battling the injury bug at the worst possible time. The Western Conference teams have all clinched so far, making the end of the season rather boring on the West coast. Pastrnak had two goal in the win. "There's no question about that", Marchand, who was most recently barred from play for three games after clipping Ottawa defenceman Mark Borowiecki on December 29, 2015, told reporters.
But it seems like suspending Marchand satisfies everyone: Tampa is happy that he got some discipline.
Tonight at Fenway Park, newly acquired lefty ace Chris Sale will make his first start as a member of the Boston Red Sox when they take on the Pittsburgh Pirates. "There's no question about that", Marchand said. He downplayed the seriousness of his transgression, calling it "just a reactionary play", and he noted that it was "nerve-wracking to watch the rest of the game away from the team".
NOTES: Boston C Patrice Bergeron went 17-0 on faceoffs. Though this foul play wouldn't be acceptable under any circumstances, it's worse when considering the fact that Marchand has scored 39 goals and 85 points this season and is one of the elite talents in the National Hockey League. Tampa Bay C Gabriel Dumont was not with the club after leaving to be with his pregnant wife.
The Lightning still have a shot at making the post-season, but it's going to take a flawless record - and some help - for Tampa Bay to earn a fourth-straight playoff berth. The Lightning, on the other hand, will meet the Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens and Buffalo Sabres. If it's on the lower end, it's fortunate for he and his Bruins teammates, given that they clinched the playoffs on Tuesday with two games left in the regular season.