BOSTON (CBS) — All too often in the NHL, a player delivers a high blind-side hit on an unsuspecting player, leaving someone sprawled out on the ice with a head injury. On Thursday night at the TD Garden, that first part took place when Gabriel Landeskog picked Brad Marchand’s head after the Bruins forward sent a shot toward the Colorado net.
Fortunately for Marchand, he was able to avoid the fate of being stuck on the ice with a head injury. But unfortunately for Marchand, he got himself in a bit of trouble by skating up to Landeskog and punching him square in the face as a thank you for the hit.
As a result, both players will be reviewed by the NHL’s Department of Player Safety for possible supplementary discipline, according to CSNNE’s Joe Haggerty.
Marchand was issued a two-minute minor for his actions, while Landeskog was ejected from the game with a match penalty for a hit to the head.
“Any time you get hit in the head, you know, you’re a little concerned. Especially with, you know, I got a concussion a couple weeks back so I was definitely nervous but I think I’m OK,” Marchand said after the Bruins lost 3-2 at home. “Things happen quick. I know that I’ve been there. I’m sure he didn’t mean it. I don’t think he’s a dirty player so, you know, it’s hockey. It is what it is.”
Avalanche coach Patrick Roy said he agreed with the five-minute major penalty that was assessed but also added that he wasn’t surprised by Marchand’s reaction.
“Well, no one is happy when you see someone — obviously you’re in the middle of the ice subject to get hit, but I guess he didn’t like it,” Roy said. “[Marchand] was like this in junior, he didn’t like to get hit by anybody.”
Landeskog claimed that he tried to let up and that the principal point of contact was the shoulder, not the head. Ultimately, that will be up to the Department of Player safety to decide.
“I tried to let up and then I tried to skate up and apologize and tell him I didn’t mean to come across and he – obviously he wasn’t hurt with that sucker punch,” Landeskog said. “Like I said, I’m happy he didn’t get hurt. I feel like principal point of contact was shoulder and like I said, I’m happy he didn’t get hurt.”
With the loss, the Bruins fell to 7-7-1 on the year. They next play Saturday at home against the Detroit Red Wings.
UPDATE: Landeskog was suspended two games; Marchand was fined $5,000.