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Talking Points: Marchand Hatty Powers Boston Bruins To 7-5 Win Over Pens



Boston Bruins
Credit: MassLive

BOSTON – Boston Bruins winger Brad Marchand notched a hat trick and added an assist as the Bruins offense exploded in a 7-5 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins at TD Garden Saturday.

David Pastrnak snapped a five-game scoreless streak with two goals and an assist, David Krejci scored and notched his 500th career assist and Charlie McAvoy set up three goals for the Bruins who bounced back from a dismal 4-1 loss to the Pens on Thursday.

Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel each had a goal and an assist for the Penguins

GOLD STAR: Brad Marchand. If it hasn’t been stated enough here, Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand needs to be in the Hart Trophy conversation. As the Bruins’ roller-coaster season has rolled on, one constant with scoring and one of the few constants has been Marchand. That was on display Saturday when the Bruins got a much-needed win over the Penguins and all of the Bruins big guns, Patrice Bergeron (goal) David Krejci (1g, 1a), David Pastrnak, (2g, 1a), and Marchand of course with the hat trick. The ‘Little Ball Of Hate’ has become quite the complete leader and player since President Obama tabbed him with that nickname when the 2011 Stanley Cup Champions went to the White House back in January 2012 and one could easily argue that the Bruins aren’t even sniffing the playoffs this season if not for Marchand. We can also thank Marchand for giving us the first real ‘normal’ moment with fans back at the Garden as hats once again flew down on the ice after a hat trick.



BLACK EYE: Sidney Crosby’s acting. Over the years this puck scribe has grown to the point, where I give Crosby the benefit of doubt when he constantly gets into the ears of the officials looking for a call. Fans of Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux may never want to admit it, but both legends of the game constantly had more whine than Napa Valley on more nights than not. Crosby takes an absolute beating almost every night even with the clutching and grabbing that Gretzky and Lemieux dealt with on a regular basis, not in the game anymore. However, what gets yours truly, and I’m sure every NHL fan – even Penguins fans – is the embellishment looking for the call. Here’s what a former NHL referee text to me after Boston Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron was called for a high-sticking double minor with 1:11 left in regulation and the Bruins up 6-5:

“In the moment I can see it but how can you not tell the sell job there after looking at the replay? He deserved a (bleeping) Oscar for that!”



TURNING POINT: Marchand’s first goal of the game at 14:56 of the second period that tied the game at three. That lamplighter from Marchand set off another offensive outburst for the Boston Bruins. After Bergeron and Pasternak each scored in the first 47 seconds of the second period to give the Bruins a 2-1 lead, the Penguins responded with two goals from Jake Guentzel and Jared McCann and had a one-goal lead again 5:11 into the middle frame. The Bruins sorted themselves again and after Marchand scored, Krejci scored at 18:29 and then Marchand gave the Bruins a 5-3 lead with 20 ticks left in the period.



HONORABLE MENTION: David Krejci. Another mantra I beat the drum hard on here, is that Krejci is not only one of the most underappreciated Boston Bruins players in my 40 years watching the Bruins as a fan and reporter but also in the entire Boston pro sports landscape. With his assist on Pastrnak’s first goal of the game, Krejci became just the seventh player in Boston Bruins history to help set up 500 goals. With his goal and an assist Saturday, Krejci now has two goals and 21 assists in 30 games this season and 209 goals and 500 assists in 941 career NHL regular-season games. A cool moment after the game when Pastrnak grabbed the game puck for his fellow Czech mate.

“I felt it was a really cool moment. Not many Czech players have done that,” Pastrnak said.


BY THE NUMBERS: 5 – As in five goals for Marchand in his last three games.

QUOTE TO NOTE: “These are the games where you have to be able to go through some adversity.” – Brad Marchand when asked how important it was for the Boston Bruins to not just score seven goals but to come back twice and not feel sorry for themselves.”

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