BOSTON (CBS) — The Bruins no longer control their playoff fate following a 2-1 shootout loss to the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night, leaving a very important point on the ice.
Many fans are wondering why Brad Marchand, Boston’s leading scorer this season with 36 goals, wasn’t part of the group Claude Julien trotted out for the shootout, which saw five Bruins fail to score.READ MORE: Giant Pothole Damages 20 To 30 Cars On Route 1 South In Lynnfield
Julien went with Ryan Spooner (3-for-3 in shootout attempts entering Tuesday), David Pastrnak (now 0-for-1 after his first attempt), Patrice Bergeron (0-for-4 entering Tuesday), Loui Eriksson (who scored Boston’s only goal but was also making his first shootout attempt of the season) and defenseman Torey Krug (1-for-1 entering Tuesday). Marchand was 0-for-3 in shootouts entering Tuesday night, and Julien was in no mood to answer second-guessers following the loss.
“We do it in practice. It’s all taken [into consideration]: what the tendencies of the goaltender are. I’ve answered that question before,” Julien snipped. “It’s all based on that. If people want to use hindsight, that’s all there is, but we make those decisions. I think the guys that went have scored in shootouts, they’ve done a great job. Because they don’t score tonight, we can second-guess all we want.”
CSN’s Joe Haggerty joined Toucher & Rich on Wednesday morning, and said not using Marchand was an inexcusable move by the B’s head coach.READ MORE: Woman Charged With Stabbing Morton Hospital Worker Ordered To Undergo Evaluation
“[Julien] basically went down without using his best. I hate the message that sends at this time of the year,” said Haggerty. “You don’t treat a game like this at the end like it’s a regular season game, where you’re playing the percentages and using your charts to see who has done decently during the season in shootouts. You use your best players in these situations because they rise to the occasion and get it done.
“If you’re going to go down, you go down with your best. To not do that, it sends the message that they weren’t feeling the urgency to use their best players, and that sends the message to the team that the urgency isn’t there,” Haggs continued. “Why should players have urgency if they’re not getting it from the top, and I have a problem with that. To lose and not use Marchand in the shootout, that’s something you can’t explain and can’t defend.”
The Bruins are now behind the Detroit Red Wings in the playoff picture, who can clinch by winning their next two games (which includes a visit to Boston on Thursday) in regulation or overtime.MORE NEWS: 3 Million Boppy Loungers Recalled After At Least 8 Infant Deaths
Haggerty breaks down the postseason picture, and what Claude Julien has to do over the final two games to keep his job in Boston: