Is anyone really surprised to learn that notorious Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand is involved in ritual sacrifice?
Marchand and his Boston Bruins took on the Toronto Maple Leafs on Sunday afternoon in what was a must win contest for the Bruins. Game 6 of the first round series between these two familiar opponents initially looked like it could go badly for the Bruins after Toronto's Morgan Rielly opened the scoring with his first goal of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs, however some undisciplined play from Maple Leafs forward Tyler Ennis and Maple Leafs' defenseman Travis Dermott would quickly help the Bruins turn the tide of the game. Those plays would lead to 2 Boston Bruins power plays and the Bruins would make the Leafs pay both times, taking an early 2 - 1 lead in the first period.
The Maple Leafs never truly recovered managing just 6 shots in the first period and only contributing 9 more in the second as the Bruins cruised all the way to a 4 - 2 victory and forced a seventh and final game in this series. Perhaps no player though had a bigger impact on the outcome of this game than the aforementioned Brad Marchand who would earn himself first star honors in this one.
Marchand contributed the first goal of the game for the Bruins which tied things up after the Rielly goal and arguably got the Bruins back into the game. He would then help set up Boston's next goal by setting up teammate Torey Krug for his first goal of the Stanley Cup Playoffs giving the Bruins a 2 - 1 lead over the Maple Leafs. As if that was not enough though it was also Marchand who would drive the dagger into the heart of the Maple Leafs in the third period, winning a tough puck battle against Toronto's Morgan Rielly who is the much bigger man, and firing a shot from center ice to secure an empty net goal and put the game out of reach.
It was an amazing performance from Marchand but there may have been some dark magic behind his performance. You see a video of Marchand's new pregame ritual has emerged and apparently it includes him sacrificing one of his sticks to the hockey gods prior to the Bruins taking to the ice. Given how successful it was for him in Game 6 I would fully expect we will see it again in Game 7.