In case you missed it, the Boston Bruins were officially eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs earlier this day in Game 5 of their second round series against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
While the Bruins opened the scoring in the first period, the Lightning stormed back with two second period goals before finally icing the game with an empty netter in the third period.
Lightning forward J.T. Miller got the game winner, just moments after absolutely CRUSHING Bruins forward David Backes with a huge open ice hit.
First the hit:
Then the goal:
Even if you’re not a Lightning fan… you have to admit that’s some good Old Time Hockey right there. Make the big hit, score the big goal. We love it. The Lightning, after having defeated the Bruins in just five games, will now await the result of the Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins series to determine their next opponent.
Of course, following his shenanigans in Game 4, all eyes were on Brad Marchand in today’s loss. Marchand inexplicably escaped punishment from the NHL after licking yet another opponent in this postseason. First, Marchand managed to escape punishment for licking Toronto Maple Leafs forward Leo Komarov in the teams’ first round playoff matchup. In game 4 against the Lightning, it was Lightning veteran Ryan Callahan who received a tongue bath from Marchand.
Again… the NHL ignored it. Or at least we thought they had until it was revealed by TSN’s Darren Dreger that the league had in fact reached out to Bruins and to Marchand in an effort to stop things.
Following today’s loss to the Lightning, Marchand finally opened up about his discussion with the league and had some strong words, calling the whole situation “stupid.”
Brad Marchand when I asked him about the NHL's statement outlawing the licking of other players: "It is what it is. I think it's pretty stupid...the whole situation. If that's what they want to do then that's what they want to do"
Here’s video of Marchand’s reaction, courtesy of NBC Sports Boston’s Joe Haggerty:
Yes, the whole situation is stupid. But... I mean... what do you expect when you go around LICKING people?