The real reason Brad Marchand was injured in Game 3.

The real reason Brad Marchand was injured in Game 3.

Brad Marchand left Game 3 after receiving a big hit, but the hit may not have caused the injury.

Jonathan Larivee

Not only did the Boston Bruins suffer a tough loss at the hands of the Florida Panthers in Game 3 of their second round Stanley Cup playoff series, but perhaps even more concerning is the fact that they appear to have lost the services of Bruins captain Brad Marchand in the process.

Marchand was injured during the course of Game 3 on Friday night and would not return to the ice for the third period, with most seemingly believing that Marchand was shaken up after receiving a hit from Panthers forward Sam Bennett. A closer look at the slow motion replay may however reveal more than initially meets the eye, and unfortunately for the Boston Bruins it seemingly only makes things even worse. 

Upon viewing the slow motion replay of the hit from Bennett, it appears as though Bennett actually strikes Marchand in the head with a closed fist wrapped tightly around the shaft of his stick. Now of course this could be attributed to Bennett bracing for contact from Marchand, but he appears to be in that position already when his right hand suddenly jerks forward to strike Marchand in the face at the moment of contact.

Of course I can't read Bennett's mind and know his intent, but he does appear to look around for a call from the officials before making his way onto the Panther's bench following the incident. Take a look at the replay and judge for yourself:

If Marchand has indeed been sidelined due to a blow to the head that could very well mean he will be forced to miss even more time in this series, something that would be a disaster for a Bruins team that already finds itself down 2-1 in the series.