The Bruins will be without their leading scorer for today’s game against Buffalo as the team announced (Twitter link) that winger Brad Marchand has been added to the NHL’s COVID-Protocol Related Absences list. He joins Jake DeBrusk and Sean Kuraly as Boston forwards that are currently unavailable.
The 32-year-old has had a strong first half to his season, notching 34 points in 29 games, marking the fifth straight year that he has produced over a point-per-game rate while giving him an eight-point lead on David Pastrnak for the team lead. Marchand was only one of five players who had played in every game this season as Boston has been hit hard by injuries and COVID.
Jack Studnicka is expected to be recalled from the taxi squad to play in Marchand’s absence. While he has been shuffled back and forth frequently this year, he still has played in 16 games for the Bruins, picking up a goal and two assists.
It’s always important to note in these situations that just because Marchand is on the CPRA list, it doesn’t mean that he has contracted the virus. Subsequent testing over the next couple of days will determine whether he will be on the list for a while or if it’s a case of a false positive which would allow him to return soon.