USATSI_9024295_154158418_lowresBoston Bruins forward Brad Marchand has been suspended three games for clipping Ottawa Senators defenceman Mark Borowiecki. The incident took place on December 29 at 8:41 of the first period.

There was no penalty on the play.

“It was a simple play, I mean, I was trying to get to the puck and turned up ice and he was just kind of standing there and just turned up and tried to go for the puck,” Marchand said after the game.

Borowiecki didn’t have possession of the puck at the time of contact and the Bruins forward leaned in low, clipping the defenceman at knee-level and subsequently flipping him. As you can hear by watching the replay below, no whistle is blown.

The Bruins took the victory over the Senators in the game by a final of 7-3 and managed four power play goals without David Krejci in the lineup, but the game turned ugly after the Marchand hit. There were fights and more incidents and the view of what happened to Borowiecki certainly varied depending on who you asked.

“I saw it and I think it’s intentional,” said Senators defenceman Erik Karlsson. “I didn’t really see exactly what happened. I haven’t seen any replay or anything, but at the same time, he knows that it’s Boro, and Boro had a big hit last game and it is what it is right now, and if it’s something worth calling after then I think the league will do the right thing.”

It didn’t help Marchand’s case that he’s been in this position before. He received a suspension for low-bridging Sami Salo in January of 2012 and he’s been warned about making certain types of contact. His repeat offender status came into the discussion of his suspension and likely led to the length of it. After all, Borowiecki wasn’t injured on the play and it wasn’t the worst thing Marchand’s done by a long stretch.

But if he was suspended five games for low-bridging Salo for actions that Brendan Shanahan called “predatory” and if he was handed a two-game suspension in 2014-2015 for slew-footing Derick Brassard, Marchand had to have known what was coming.

Playing on the edge is all well and good for a player of his calibre, but crossing that line is going to prove costly. And this time out, it cost Brad Marchand three games.

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