By: Erin Walsh
It’s no surprise that Brad Marchand has emerged as one of the NHL’s elite. Marchand is a 28 year old Canadian winger currently playing for the Boston Bruins. He was selected 71st overall by the Boston Bruins in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. “Marchy” as he is so oftenly called is in his prime. This season he has 37 goals and 43 assists which tallies to 80 points in 73 games played. Marchand has had a fantastic year for Boston, but how did he become this good? Let’s take a look back at Brad Marchand’s career with the black and gold.
Providence Bruins (AHL):
Marchand started off his black and gold career with the Boston Bruins AHL affiliate, the Providence Bruins in the 2008-2009 season. In 79 games played, Marchand scored 18 goals and recorded 41 assists for a total of 59 points. Marchand ended the year with a +/- of +13. Marchand did great in his first year in the AHL and showed that he could be a top performer. In 2009-2010, Marchand played 20 games with the Boston Bruins recording only 1 assist and was a -3. So, he was sent back down to Providence where he scored 13 goals and recorded 19 assists for 32 points in 34 games played. Marchy was a +14 during that season and once again showed that he was very talented. In 2009, Marchand was given the Rookie of the Year award by the P-Bruins as well as the Fan Appreciation Award. Bruins fans everywhere started to love Brad Marchand and they couldn’t wait for him to be a full-time Boston Bruin.
Boston Bruins (NHL):
In 2010-2011 Marchand played in his first full season with the Boston Bruins. He scored his first NHL goal on November 3, 2010 in the Bruins game against the Buffalo Sabres. In 77 games played that season Marchy scored 21 goals and recorded 20 assists for 41 points. During that season, Marchand was an outstanding +25. During the 2010-11 season, Marchand won NESN’s Seventh Player Award for performing above and beyond expectations. During this season the Bruins went to the playoffs and in 25 games played Marchand scored 11 goals and recorded 8 assists for 19 points and was a +12. The B’s went on to win the Stanley Cup that year and with Marchands help, it made their dreams come true.
In 2011-2012 Marchand scored 28 goals and recorded 27 assists for 55 points in 76 games played. He was a +31 during this season which is phenomenal for his second full NHL season. During the 2011-12 playoffs Marchand scored 1 goal and recorded 1 assist for a total of 2 points in 7 games played. He was a -1 during this playoff run and the B’s were unfortunately knocked out of the playoffs by the Washington Capitals in game 7. During this season Marchy was awarded the Boston Bruins Elizabeth Dufresne Trophy for outstanding performance during home games (voted by Boston media) as well as the John P. Bucyk Award for the greatest off-ice charitable contributions (chosen by Bucyk).
In 2012-2013 the NHL season was cut short due to the lockout. In that year Marchand recorded 18 goals and 18 assists for 36 points in 45 games played, which is great! Marchy was a +23 that year and helped the Bruins clinch a playoff berth. In the 2012-13 playoffs Marchand recorded 4 goals and 9 assists for 13 points and was a +4. The B’s made it all the way to the Stanley Cup finals to face the Chicago Blackhawks but unfortunately their season came to a disappointing end with Chicago beating them in game 6 to win the Stanley Cup. Marchand continued to prove that he was a fantastic hockey player.
In 2013-2014 Marchand recorded 25 goals and 28 assists for 53 points in 82 games. Marchand was a +36 on the season and continued proving the haters wrong! He kept proving to hockey fans everywhere that he can be extremely valuable to this Bruins team. In the 2013-14 playoffs Marchand had cooled down, he didn’t score any goals and recorded 5 assists for 5 points in 12 games played. He was a +4 during this playoff run and didn’t seem to have that fire that he had the past couple of playoff runs. The B’s were knocked out by the Montreal Canadiens in the second round of the playoffs.
In 2014-2015 Marchand recorded 24 goals and 18 assists for 42 points in 77 games played and was a +5 on the season. This was the season that the Bruins organization started to decline. The NHL was changing and the Bruins weren’t. The NHL was changing into a more fast paced, offensive league and Claude Julien refused to change his ways and continued to coach a defensive style of hockey. Marchand could have scored some more goals and recorded more assists if the B’s played a more offensive style of hockey. During this season the Bruins missed the playoffs and it was extremely disappointing.
In 2015-2016 Marchand scored 37 goals and recorded 24 assists for 61 points in 77 games played. Marchy was a +21 on the season and he proved once again that he is a great hockey player. This was a breakout year for Brad Marchand and he did not disappoint. Marchand continued to emerge as one of the NHL’s elite. He was very strong on the puck, had great puck handling, great skating, as well as great dangling and shooting skills. Unfortunately the B’s missed the playoffs once again which was very disappointing because we could have seen Marchand have a breakout in the playoffs as well. During this season Brad Marchand played for Team Canada in the 2016 IIHF World Cup of hockey. Marchand played on a line with Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and his linemate from Boston, Patrice Bergeron. In 10 games played Marchand recorded 4 goals and 3 assists for 7 points and was a +9 during this tournament. Marchand helped Team Canada win the Gold Medal and the hockey world started to realize just how good Brad Marchand was. Marchand was known as a “rat” and a “dirty player” up until this tournament when everyone saw what he could really do.
During this 2016-2017 season Marchand currently has 37 goals and 43 assists for 80 points in 73 games played. So far Marchand is a +17 and has helped the B’s win many games this season. After the firing of Claude Julien, Brad Marchand received a MAJOR offensive boost. Interim head coach Bruce Cassidy loves the offensive style of play and that has shown during his time with the B’s this season. At this point Marchand is expected to score 40+ goals this season and is competing for the NHL’s most prestigious awards. This season Marchand has really emerged into one of the NHL’s elite alongside Sidney Crosby and Connor McDavid. Marchand wants to lead this Bruins team to the playoffs and he is proving that in every game he has played this season. Marchy recently received the NHL’s First Star of the week for his outstanding performance lately.
Marchand has really matured into an elite player in the NHL. He has always been a goal scorer and was a steal in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft going 71st overall. Marchand continues to impress the hockey world and will continue to do so in the years to come. With Bruce Cassidy wanting to play an offensive style of hockey, Brad Marchand could possibly be a 50 goal scorer in the years to come (provided Cassidy gets the head coaching job). Don’t underestimate Brad Marchand, he’ll make you pay!
Photo: (Only In Boston)