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Boston Bruins vs Toronto Maple Leafs


TORONTO – The Boston Bruins will get their most harmful offensive participant again within the lineup, whereas the Toronto Maple Leafs should proceed to outlive with out theirs.
Brad Marchand, who missed two video games with a concussion, will take to the ice Friday at Air Canada Centre. Toronto’s Auston Matthews, nevertheless, stays day-to-day with an upper-body harm.
"He does lots of injury for that staff, however they nonetheless have lots of weapons," Marchand stated. "[Nazem] Kadri’s been good the final couple years. Clearly, [William] Nylander, [Tyler] Bozak, [Morgan] Rielly on the again finish. [Patrick] Marleau coming in—that’s an enormous veteran presence. No matter who they’re lacking, they’re a harmful staff."
Marchand returns from concussion to face 'very harmful' Maple Leafs
Marchand completed top-five in NHL scoring in 2016-17 and had picked up the place he left off this fall, scoring eight targets and 14 factors by way of 12 video games earlier than getting faraway from Saturday’s loss versus Washington.
"The previous few days I’ve felt good and determined to come back again," stated Marchand.
"Each time you don’t care for the puck, [Toronto] can capitalize on it. Particularly right here, they actually thrive off the momentum. Once they get going, they’re actually laborious to play in opposition to. Quite a lot of harmful younger gamers. They’re a troublesome staff to play the final couple years, and we anticipate a very laborious recreation tonight."
Marchand rejoins Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak on one in every of hockey’s most explosive strains. Kadri, Leo Komarov and Nylander—an in depth pal of Pastrnak’s—shall be charged with shutting them down.
Marchand turned aware of Toronto coach Mike Babcock when the 2 males received Olympic and World Cup gold collectively.
"It’s not straightforward enjoying for him. He calls for rather a lot. He expects his gamers to be superb, however he brings one of the best out of them," Marchand stated of the Leafs. "You see how this staff’s modified across the final couple years. They’re solely going to get higher with time."
Fellow ahead Noel Acciari, who’s been restricted to only one recreation this season after breaking a finger, additionally attracts again into Boston’s injury-riddled roster.
"Noel’s slightly underappreciated—not from our standpoint however across the hockey world. He’s a hardnosed man who can set the tempo for us bodily. With [David] Backes out, his presence is welcomed again," Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy stated.
"Marchy’s one in every of our greatest gamers, top-of-the-line gamers within the Nationwide Hockey League. All the time nice to have him again."
Sadly, followers received’t get to see Marchand and Matthews head-to-head of their golf equipment’ first assembly because the former trolled this metropolis’s media with a slick praise on Twitter:
"Poking? I don’t try this, do I? By no means," stated Marchand, with a smirk.
"It’s unbelievable how one thing will get blown up right here. He’s made some spectacular performs this 12 months, so that you gotta give the child credit score. I didn’t anticipate it to explode the way in which it did. The media likes to have lots of enjoyable."
So does Marchand.
We requested 21-year-old sniper Pastrnak to specify one factor he’s realized from recreation’s most infamous disturber.
"Trash speak," replied the Czech star. "All gamers suppose they’re going to get him on his nostril, however that’ll by no means work. He don’t care about it, and he all the time has a solution for you."
The Maple Leafs’ should provide you with a solution for Matthews’ absence in an essential divisional back-to-back.
Goaltender Frederik Andersen’s 35-save efficiency did the trick Wednesday in opposition to Minnesota, however Toronto was sorely outplayed and shall be searching for a greater staff effort with their MVP on the sidelines.
"We have now to ensure we hold profitable video games so long as he’s out. I’m positive he needs to get enjoying with us, however you need to care for your self," stated Mitch Marner, who's caught in a 16-game purpose drought.
"I feel individuals maintain it in fairly nicely, however each hockey participant will get pissed off once they’re injured and never enjoying hockey video games and may’t assist their staff win. He’s in all probability simply on the point of come again quickly, and when he will get again, he’ll be seeking to get again on that scorching roll he was on."

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