Why Bruce Cassidy has ‘a bit of a problem’ with some refs’ treatment of Brad Marchand


Don Cherry’s convinced that Brad Marchand’s stick stomp on Columbus forward Cam Atkinson’s blade in overtime of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference second round led to the cross checking penalty Marchand got outside of a scrum at the end of the first period of Game 2.

The Blue Jackets scored a power-play goal 1:03 into the second period after Marchand got called for his infraction on Alexandre Texier.

Whether the two incidents were related doesn’t matter to Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy. He went to bat for the rambunctious left wing Sunday, about 11 hours after the Blue Jackets’ 3-2 double-overtime win evened the series 1-1 heading for Game 3 on Tuesday.

 “Marshy had no penalty minutes in the playoffs. None, until last night, zero,” Cassidy said. “Leading scorer on our team. All of a sudden I’ve got NHL (news), like ‘keep an eye out.’ I’m kind of like, ‘What are you talking about? Why are you going down this road on a guy that’s kept his nose clean?’

Atkinson, all he cared about was his 300 bucks. We could arrange it. He said it was a clever play, whatever. So the victim of this perpetrated crime is not really upset.

“So no I don’t like the penalty personally. Is it a cross check, is it a scrum? You know generally the scrums you take one from each side. … They’ve got a guy (Oliver Bjorkstrand) grabbing (Torey) Krug, wants to obviously get him off the ice for five minutes, and the ref’s going to go and break him up.

“So I have a bit of a problem with the treatment of Marshy with certain officials. And I think he’s earned some of his, obviously, his reputation. But not right now. He’s been clean all year, he’s been clean all playoffs. So I hoped that would go away and the talk would be about ‘hey he hasn’t scored in two games, what can we do to get him going there?’ More like Pastrnak. I think Marshy’s generated, they just haven’t gone in, so that would be my answer to that part of it.

“Anyway, here we are again talking about him, his two penalty minutes in nine playoff games. That’s kind of my take on the Marshy stuff.”

Cassidy also wasn’t pleased with some uneven officiating in the overtimes. Cassidy felt like Atkinson got away with a penalty on Patrice Bergeron in the first overtime.

Of course, the Bruins got called for one minor penalty in each overtime, and the one on Bergeron in the second overtime led to Matt Duchene’s game-winning goal.

“Well I clearly thought Bergeron had a point-blank chance where Atkinson, he’s hooking him for three seconds. He whiffed on the first one because of it, he got the second one off because he fought through it. To me that’s a scoring chance, it’s an infraction, it’s a penalty that was missed.

“Now did we commit two fouls? Yep. We got called for them, we didn’t kill them, the second one, that’s your ballgame. So that was my beef with that one, I thought they missed an obvious call. It happens. I’m sure their coach probably thought they missed some on them and off we go. Did I think the officiating was poor? No, not at all.”

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