By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — Brad Marchand really is incredible. Not only does he possess world-class talent as a hockey player, but he also has a knack for always finding a way to get under opponents’ skin.
While Marchand has crossed the line a few times (OK, six times) in terms of the physical game, one area that’s never gotten him into too much trouble has been in the ancient art of talking trash.
And in that area, Marchand has been voted by his peers as the very best.
And also the very worst.
How perfectly Marchand.
The NHLPA polled over 500 players from all 31 NHL teams from the preseason through January, and among the questions were “Who is the game’s best trash-talker?” and “Who is the game’s worst trash-talker?” Marchand won both.
Who is the game’s best trash-talker?
Brad Marchand: 21.3%
Drew Doughty: 11.8%
Ryan Reaves: 5.5%
Claude Giroux: 4.8%
Nick Cousins: 3.3%
Who is the game’s worst trash-talker?
Brad Marchand: 12.5%
Antoine Roussel: 5.5%
P.K. Subban: 5.1%
Nick Cousins: 4.7%
Brendan Lemieux: 3.5%
As the NHLPA website explained, “The players’ vote goes to show Brad Marchand’s chirps aren’t for everyone.”
Marchand seemed to find amusement in earning the distinction, posting a faux-acceptance speech on his Twitter account.
Outside of Marchand, the Bruins weren’t much involved in most of the answers to the poll questions. Patrice Bergeron did earn votes for “toughest player to play against,” earning 9.2 percent of the votes and coming in third, behind Connor McDavid (30.9 percent) and Sidney Crosby (16.0 percent). Bergeron also earned some votes for the question “Which player would you select to start a franchise with?” In that area, 1.7 percent of respondents selected Bergeron, putting him fourth behind McDavid (60%), Crosby (18.5%), and Auston Matthews (4.3%). Former Marchand linemate Tyler Seguin earned some votes for being one of the NHL’s best-dressed players, as well.
Players were also asked for their favorite athlete outside of hockey. Patriots quarterback Tom Brady came in fourth place with 8.7 percent of the vote, behind Tiger Woods (24.4 percent), Roger Federer (11.3 percent), and LeBron James (9.5 percent). It’s good to see that at least a few NHL players have come around on LeBron; that hasn’t always been the case.
As for Marchand? Well, he’s likely to continue being Marchand.