BOSTON — The Boston Bruins are going to be without leading scorer Brad Marchand for the rest of the regular season.
The Bruins forward who has 85 points (39 goals, 46 assists) was suspended two games by the NHL on Thursday for a spearing incident against Tampa Bay defenceman Jake Dotchin in a 4-0 Bruins win on Tuesday.
Boston, which clinched a berth in the Stanley Cup playoffs with that win, has two games left in the regular season, hosting Ottawa on Thursday night, Washington on Saturday.
Marchand was given a five-minute major penalty for spearing and a game misconduct at 19:20 of the first period Tuesday after he lifted his stick with force into Dotchin’s groin area while battling in front of the Lightning net.
"It was definitely very, very selfish and undisciplined," Marchand said. "But you can’t do anything about it now, and the most important thing is we’re in the playoffs and regardless of who we have to play, we have to do the job. So a couple games here and we’re still a very capable team on the ice. They won a huge game without me the other night and they’re going to be ready to play regardless."
In issuing the suspension the league said in an explanatory video that Marchand’s history affected its decision. Marchand was suspended four times for 12 games total prior to this punishment. He was also fined three times, including $10,000 for slew-footing Detroit defenceman Niklas Kronwall in January.
Marchand will lose $109,756.10 based on his annual salary.
"I’m not really concerned about how anyone feels outside of the room," Marchand said. "Things happen in hockey and again the only people I care about in this world are my teammates and my family. And I think that they have different thoughts about me. So everyone’s entitled to their opinion."
The Bruins entered the game tied with the Senators for second place in the Atlantic Division with 94 points. The Stanley Cup playoffs begin next week.