Boston Bruins LW Brad Marchand will return to the lineup and make his season debut on Thursday night vs. the Detroit Red Wings. Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery told reporters Thursday morning Marchand won’t play on back-to-backs. The left wing will play Thursday and be out Friday vs. the Blue Jackets.
Marchand’s return is a bit of a surprise after multiple hip surgeries. The target date for his return was initially going to be before Thanksgiving, which is in about one month. Marchand is back before the end of October, which seems ahead of schedule.
Marchand will resume his spot on the top line for the Bruins at LW alongside C Patrice Bergeron. The Bruins have broken up the Marchand-Bergeron-Pastrnak line to start the season and things have worked out well at 6-1-0. Having Pastrnak with Taylor Hall and David Krejci on the second line spreads out the scoring more evenly.
We’ll see if Marchand plays a normal amount but of ice time. It’s best to temper expectations in his return. The matchup is good, however, with the Red Wings allowing at least four goals in three of four games. Marchand is also back skating on the first power-play unit with Bergeron, Krejci, Pastrnak, and Jake DeBrusk, who is RW on the top line.