Cheeky Brad Marchand prepares for a fierce first-round matchup against the rival Maple Leafs.
Photo credit: ESPN

Bruins Captain pays respect to Leafs Nation ahead of 1st round matchup

Published April 19, 2024 at 10:56

There is no love lost between Bruins and Leafs nation. In the first round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Toronto Maple Leafs will face off against the Boston Bruins, a team they haven't defeated in postseason play since 1959.

The rivalry between these two hockey clubs has become synonymous with intense hatred over the past decade. These historic franchises have engaged in legendary playoff battles, all ending in total disappointment for Maple Leafs fans. Despite the Bruins' historical success in these matchups, Captain Brad Marchand acknowledges the formidable challenge posed by their Canadian adversaries, emphasizing the significance of the rivalry between the two teams.

Marchand's playoff victories and consistent showings against the Maple Leafs have undoubtedly left a lasting impression on the minds of Toronto fans.

"At the start of the season, that's what you want. You want an opportunity to play for a Cup. Toronto's gonna be an extremely tough matchup...it should be fun. We're excited to get going."

In the last 11 seasons, the Bruins and the Maple Leafs have clashed in the playoffs on four occasions, beginning with their memorable showdown in the 2013 first round. This thrilling win served as a catalyst, propelling the Bruins towards the Stanley Cup Final.

Currently, Brad Marchand's focus lies solely on the Bruins' upcoming clash against their biggest rival, the Toronto Maple Leafs.

«They're always extremely competitive. You never know which way the series is going to go. But that's what you want. That's what you love about hockey is the competition aspect. They're real competitors over there, especially the way they're built right now. So it's going to be a lot of fun, and that's what playoffs is about. It's about the best teams going head-to-head.»

Entering the series, the Maple Leafs boast the NHL's second-ranked offense, averaging 3.63 goals per game. Auston Matthews spearheaded their scoring efforts with an impressive 69 goals this season, setting both a personal milestone and a new franchise record.

Marchand also adds
«You see the excitement they have all throughout Canada when they're in playoffs,» Marchand said Thursday. «Makes it a lot of fun to play them. And I think, just with the history we've had with them recently, they're probably our biggest rival right now over the last decade."

The outcome of the upcoming Bruins/Leafs playoff showdown remains uncertain, leaving Toronto fans eager yet apprehensive about the potential outcome. However, Brad Marchand remains undaunted by the challenge and looks forward to the excitement of this 7 game heavyweight bout.

Source: NHL
April 19   |   129 answers
Bruins Captain pays respect to Leafs Nation ahead of 1st round matchup

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