BOSTON (CBS) — After missing two games due to landing on the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol list, Brad Marchand is set to return to the Bruins on Tuesday night against the Devils.
Marchand participated in the team’s morning skate, and he spoke to the media after the practice session. The star winger said it was a false positive test result that wiped out his weekend.READ MORE: Massachusetts gas prices now at record high $4.60 a gallon
“It’s frustrating, but it’s part of what’s going on right now,” Marchand said. “You never want to miss a game and you never want to miss a day on the ice, but every team is going through it. It’s happened a few times to our team now and it’s happening to every team. So it’s part of the process. … This is a bump in the road. This is what comes with it, to be able to play the games and do our jobs. So we’re not going to complain about this, with everything that’s going on and with everything that people are going through. To miss a couple days is no big deal. And like I said, back at it tonight.”
Marchand said that after the positive test on Saturday, he returned three negative tests before Sunday’s game. Still, protocol required him to miss Sunday’s game as well. He said he’s hopeful that once players have access to the vaccine — along with the general public, sometime in April — false positives won’t prevent players from missing games in the postseason.
“Hopefully it just allows guys to stay in the lineup, especially come playoff time,” Marchand said. “You can’t have guys missing a couple of games in playoffs because of false positives. And then at the same time, hopefully it lowers the risk of guys getting it and being out for 10 days and missing a whole series. So yeah I mean, hopefully we can get it soon, and it should help.”READ MORE: Coronavirus In Massachusetts: Today's Developments
Marchand had played in all 29 games this season prior to being forced to miss Saturday’s game vs. the Sabres. He leads the team in assists (22) and points (34) while ranking second in goals (12). The Bruins went 1-1-0 without him over the weekend, beating Buffalo on Saturday but getting shut out by the Devils on Sunday.
Marchand said he had to watch those games at home, and his kids might have reduced his normal attention level.
“Obviously they take a lot of attention, but I was still able to watch the games,” he said. “At times if I had to get up and move around, I just turned the iPad around. So I found a way to watch it. Maybe not as as attentive as I would have liked, but that’s part of it.”
The Bruins will also get defenseman Brandon Carlo back in the lineup on Tuesday night, after he missed almost all of March due to a head injury suffered on a hit by Tom Wilson. The hit landed Wilson with a seven-game suspension.MORE NEWS: Celtics core group makes their statement with series win over Bucks
“I’ve had enough of the viewing party on level nine,” Carlo said. “I’m excited to get back out there.”