Bruins Room: Amidst Mini-Slump, Marchand Says ‘We’ll Be Alright’
The Boston Bruins could head into their midseason break mired in a four-game losing streak if they fall to the Toronto Maple Leafs Wednesday night in Toronto. They also recently lost out on the biggest fish on the NHL trade market in new New York Islanders center Bo Horvat. He didn’t exactly go all Sgt. Hulka (google it kids!), on those claiming the sky is falling for the Bruins right now, but Brad Marchand wants them to know that the Bruins are going to be just fine.
“We easily could’ve won that game in Florida. The game we lost in Tampa – lucky goal. So yeah, we lost a few games, yeah, we didn’t have a good game in Carolina. But if you break it down, like, I’m not concerned. No one’s really too concerned about losing three in a row,” the optimistic and realistic Marchand told reporters before he and his teammates headed north to Toronto on Tuesday.
“It’s not ideal, but if you look at the way we lost, like I said, we gave up a bad one there in Florida and they got a lucky one in Tampa. That’s gonna happen. We’re playing really good teams, we’re getting the best from every team we play, and we know that. So we’ve just gotta dial it back in a little bit. We’ll be all right.”
Marchand isn’t wrong. The 3-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning last Thursday could’ve gone either way, and both teams were at their best for the full 60 minutes. There were issues with execution and clearly some sloppiness that led to them surrendering the game-tying goal with 2.6 ticks left in regulation and then the overtime winner 17 seconds into the extra frame of the 4-3 loss to the Florida Panthers last Saturday.
When the Boston Bruins embarked on this five-game road trip that concludes tonight in Toronto, there was plenty of hype surrounding them and the potential of breaking the league record for most points in a season, 134, held by the 1976-77 Montreal Canadiens. That hype was all outside noise to Marchand and the Bruins though, and they’re not the least bit surprised they’ve gone 1-2-1 through the first four games of the road trip.
“You’re not gonna coast through this league, regardless,” Marchand pointed out. “And listen, we’re not that good of a team. Yeah, we’re good, but we’re not gonna run through this league, and we never thought that for a second. And even if you look at the games we won early on, we won because we played the right way, we play hard, and we just find a way to win. It’s not like we’re dominating every game. There’s too much parity in this league. And even the teams that are in the playoffs right now, they could easily put up six, seven goals a night. So it’s a very, very competitive league.”
While the President’s Trophy may have seemed like a lock for the Boston Bruins to some last week, it never did for Marchand and the Bruins players. Furthermore, the players could care less about that, or setting records in the regular season. All of that is meaningless if they’re not the last one standing in the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs like so many President’s Trophy winners, including the, 2019-20, 2013-14 and 1989-90 Boston Bruins teams. As the current Bruins preached before this trip they embrace adversity and losses as long as they get to the dance and can compete for the Stanley Cup.
“I mean there’s easily seven or eight contending teams this year that are legit contenders, and then really any team could come out of the woodwork at this point of the year, too,” he said. “I mean, you look at what St. Louis did in ’19. So it really doesn’t matter how teams view us. It’s how we take care of our own game and how we view ourselves and how we want to try to build for the playoffs. And it does make every game a little bit harder, because teams know they need to be prepared when they play us. But that’s only going to make us better down the road, too.”