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Bruins’ Marchand punches Blue Jackets’ Harrington in back of head

Think Brad Marchand has changed his ways?

Think again.

Marchand once again let the pest inside him get the better of his better judgment late in the third period of Boston’s 2-1 Game 3 loss against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday.

The Bruins forward, who seemed to have an epiphany of sorts this year as he worked his way to his first 100-point season (and steered clear of the penalty box for the most part) went back to old faithful with 1:01 remaining.

Blue Jackets defenseman Scott Harrington was sitting up on his knees after a stoppage in play in the Columbus zone. Marchand positioned himself behind the unsuspecting Harrington and landed a jab flush to the back of his head, out of the sight of the officials who were dealing with a couple of scrums that had erupted following the whistle.

There was no call on the play.

“I am not giving you my thoughts. I don’t need to give any thoughts on that,” Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella said afterward. “You guys can come up with something there.”

Marchand has been suspended six times in his NHL career, with his latest coming last season when he elbowed now-teammate Marcus Johannson in the head. That one garnered him five games.

It remains to be seen what, if any, action the NHL’s Department of Player Safety takes in this case.

It meets quite a bit of criterion, however. Defenseless player and avoidable head contact come to mind.


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck