There’s some significant injury news in Beantown after the team was eliminated in the First Round a couple of weeks ago. The Boston Bruins announced today that star forward Brad Marchand underwent successful hip arthroscopy and labral repair on both of his hips. The recovery process is slated to take six months, making it likely Marchand is out for nearly the first two months of the 2022-23 regular season.
Marchand’s projected unavailability next season only adds to what’s bound to be an offseason of chaos for the Bruins. With the future of captain Patrice Bergeron up in the air, the team can’t really have a plan yet of how to attack the offseason and free agency.
On the ice, losing Marchand for any amount of time is a staggering blow for this Bruins team. Not only does Marchand bring all the intangibles that he’s so well known for, but he also remains one of the most offensively skilled left-wingers in the league. He scored 80 points in 70 games last season for his sixth straight season above a point per game pace.
Off the ice, moving Marchand to long-term injured reserve for the start of the regular season could buy the Bruins some time. The team has under $3MM in cap space this offseason, and while they have few roster spots to replace, the aging team needs to modify their roster to stay competitive in a tough Atlantic Division. Most importantly, there’s the matter of re-signing or replacing Bergeron, and the latter option will likely be much more costly. If the Bruins can buy some more cap space for the start of the season, it would allow them a few months into the year to figure out some trade scenarios for players to free up space.
Regardless, at 34 years old, the Bruins just hope Marchand is able to rebound to his previous level of play after what was a decently intensive surgery.