By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — Brad Marchand punched an unsuspecting opponent on Tuesday night, in the midst of a heated playoff game. On Wednesday afternoon, after having some time to settle down, Marchand … didn’t regret a thing.READ MORE: 12 Firefighters Treated For Chemical Burns After Fire In Cambridge
After word broke Wednesday morning that he would not be facing a suspension from the NHL for the punch, Marchand spoke to reporters who were eager to get Marchand’s explanation for what took place.
While Marchand did admit that the punch to the head of Scott Harrington was “unnecessary,” that was about as far down the contrition path he wanted to go.
“J.D. was taking a few punches in front of the net from a couple of guys, so, it was kind of a reaction to that,” Marchand told reporters, noting that it was “not at all” a punch made out of frustration for the Bruins’ position in the game and the series.
Marchand, who’s been suspended six times before but never in the postseason, said he’s not sweating the added media attention and the calls for him to be suspended.
“Yeah, I mean, it is what it is,” he said. “There’s a lot of media attention in the playoffs. They jump onto things and hold onto it and it creates a stir. It is what it is. I’m not overly concerned about what’s said in the media and what fans say and stuff like that. You know, it was an unnecessary play, but it is what it is, games go on and we worry about the next one.”
As for the fans of various other teams who have expressed disgust and rage toward him for the punch? Marchand offered them a … thank you message.
“To be honest, I don’t even know what’s being said. I don’t pay attention to it,” Marchand said. “I’ve learned over the years to stay away from the media, especially this time of year. Fans all have their opinions, and they’re entitled to it — they pay us a lot of money to play the game, so thank you. But yeah, you just roll with it, and it is what it is, and we’ll try to stay within the room.”
Marchand also noted of his punch: “It’s playoff hockey.”
Marchand’s contention that DeBrusk was “taking a few punches” is not entirely confirmed by video. Replay shows a pair of Blue Jackets — David Savard and Josh Anderson — roughing up the Bruins forward, but neither throws a punch.
Clearly, DeBrusk wasn’t exactly getting punched. He was merely the recipient of your standard playoff post-whistle rough stuff that is delivered by every team at this time of year. The punch from Marchand was at least slightly outside of those norms.MORE NEWS: Wednesday's Child: 15-Year-Old Justin
But the league didn’t have a problem with it, so neither does Marchand.