Brad Marchand was suspended by the NHL for his clipping of Sami Salo. However, if you read Marchand's blog post, he surprisingly sees things a bit differently. According to Marchand, he still believes he did nothing wrong and the league and referees "don't know the rulebook".
Marchand posted this blog which shows that he is in denial over the suspension and his illegal hit.
It technically wasn't a clip. Clipping is when you hit someone at the knees and I did not hit him at the knees. Anyone that has seen the video will see that I hit him in the upper thigh under the buttocks.
They can call it a clipping, but they obviously don't know the rules of hockey. I felt like I was trying to protect myself and get low and he went over me. It was very unfortunate that he was injured on the play.
This is really getting to be a bit ridiculous. Marchand first claims he doesn't aim for the knee but his upper thigh. Really? So the video in slow motion and the video in which Shanahan explains the suspension is a sham?
If Marchand was trying to defend himself, why didn't he brace himself for a body check like he did earlier on his shift?
Even if he did aim for the upper thigh, it is still a dirty hit. He made no attempt whatsoever to play the puck.
For starters, as a young player it is not wise to call out referees—let alone Brendan Shanahan. Shanahan stated in the video that it was a predatory hit and clipping which violates rule 44. For Marchand to contest that is ludicrous. He really needs to read a rule book considering he has been penalized for this before.
Marchand also needs to drop the protection defense because Salo was skating at a very slow pace and no way indicated he was going to check Marchand. How will this suspension affect the perception of Marchand?
Frankly, Marchand doesn't care how he is perceived after his dirty hit. He goes on to write in the same blog entry:
Their coach [Alain Vigneault] came out and said I play to hurt players. He obviously wanted to take a shot at me and stir the pot for the hearing [Monday]. It just shows the class he has or lack thereof. I really am not going to respond or bite into what he's trying to feed me there. I hear Twitter was filled with comments about me today.
For anyone that wants to call me someone who takes cheap shots, they can say what they want. It doesn't affect me. I don't care what people who don't know me and I don't know them and they have no meaning to me, I don't care what they say. I don't really care what my reputation is. I just want to play. I'm doing this as my job. I love this team. I'm just trying to be a player and I don't care what my reputation is really. I'm not out there to hurt guys. When I'm out there, I play a hard-nosed game and play hard. If guys are soft and don't like it, then that's fine. I'm not out there to please anybody. I'm out there to do my job.
Well, what can you say after this outburst from Marchand? At first, I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. I wanted to believe that he is an effective player who made a lapse in judgment. After reading this series of blog posts by Marchand, I am starting to think five games isn't going to be enough time to learn from his mistakes.
It is one thing to be angry, but to question the ruling on the suspension and claiming you don't care isn't going to sit well with the league. The purpose of suspending players is used to reinforce the notion that players can not be reckless on the ice.
Marchand is a very effective player when he wants to be. He can forecheck, grind and do many good things for the Bruins. However, his mouth isn't going to win him any new fans around the league and he may have just put a target on his back.
Tom Urtz, Jr. is an NHL featured columnist. For NHL news, updates and alerts about players: