Bruins forward Brad Marchand checked in with Mut & Merloni Wednesday afternoon for his weekly discussion, following Tuesday night's 4-3 victory over the Devils, the team's sixth straight win.
Marchand took a bad penalty in the second period Tuesday night, leading to a New Jersey goal and a spot on the bench for Marchand for the final nine minutes of the period.
"I think it had to do with more than just that penalty," Marchand said of the benching. "My game wasn't where it should be last night and coach sent me a message."
When he returned, Marchand scored a goal six seconds into the third period.
"I knew I had to do better," he said. "I had to play better and do my job better. I took a penalty that cost the team the first goal. Luckily ... I was able to get it back. It was nice to be able to go out there and have a better third period."
During Wednesday's practice, goalie Tuukka Rask was not happy after allowing a goal. Marchand enjoyed watching the ensuing tirade.
"We were practicing the power play and Tuuks couldn't stop a beach ball. He decided to take it out on his stick," Marchand said. "It was funny, though, because he couldn't break it. So, he ended up getting madder and madder. He was breaking his stick over the post and it wouldn't break. The boys just kept laughing at him. It was pretty funny."
In Saturday's win over the Sabres, Milan Lucic charged into goalie Ryan Miller after Miller skated well out of the crease to knock a sliding puck away from the streaking Bruins forward. Lucic was penalized but not suspended. The Sabres, meanwhile, have been criticized for not responding in a more physical manner.
Marchand said players have be careful in situations like that because the league has cracked down with suspensions. However, he acknowledged the Bruins would have handled it differently.
"Every team is a little different," he said, "Our team is very close and guys go to bat for each other. It would have been a completely different story if that was our team. But every team's different. We just have great camaraderie in the rink."
The teams meet again next Wednesday night in Buffalo.
"We're obviously going to be prepared for anything," Marchand said. "We don't know what's going to happen again. They've got to obviously watch out. The league's going to be watching that game, knowing that they might try to get revenge or something. So, we're going to be prepared. However they want to play, then we'll play that way. But obviously, we have a really tough team, and we can stand up for ourselves."
As for the play, Marchand was asked if Miller was "fair game" by coming out so far to play the puck and exposing himself.
"I wouldn't say he's fair game, but you do have to protect yourself," Marchand said "I think Looch tried to do everything he could to get that puck. … When you're in that situation with a guy like Looch -- he's very big, he weighs a lot -- it's tough for him to veer off the boards when he's going that fast. If you don't protect yourself and you don't bear down, then you can get hurt. I've seen guys in the past get hurt by goalies when they let up and the goalie just crushes them, and they've gotten concussions. So, you do have to protect yourself. And that's all Looch was doing."