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Bruins’ Brad Marchand suspended for three games

Ottawa’s Mark Borowiecki was hit by Brad Marchand in the first period.
Ottawa’s Mark Borowiecki was hit by Brad Marchand in the first period.Jim Davis/Globe Staff/Globe Staff

FOXBOROUGH — Brad Marchand will sit out the next three games — including Friday's Winter Classic — for clipping Ottawa's Mark Borowiecki on Tuesday night.

Marchand was not penalized for the hit, but the Department of Player Safety had a telephone hearing with Marchand on Wednesday afternoon and opted to suspend the Bruins left wing.

The hit came at 8:41 of the first period, when Marchand upended Borowiecki, resulting in the Senators defenseman leaving the ice briefly. The video released by the Department of Player Safety called it a "late, low hit."

"Marchand dips his shoulder, gets low, and cuts sharply into Borowiecki's legs, sending him cartwheeling dangerously into the air," the video explained. "This is clipping. It is important to note that in addition to the extremely low point of contact, Borowiecki is not eligible to be checked in any manner, let alone with a sudden check thrown at knee level."

The Department of Player Safety's video indicated that the onus was on Marchand to avoid the contact.

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Marchand downplayed the collision after the game, which the Bruins won, 7-3, saying, "It was a simple play. I was trying to get to the puck carrier and I turned up ice and he was kind of standing there. I just turned up and tried to go after the puck carrier."

It is another in a string of disciplinary actions that have marred Marchand's career. He had been suspended three previous times, for a slew foot on Derick Brassard, for elbowing R.J. Umberger, for a low bridge on Sami Salo. Marchand also has been fined, including for another slew foot, on Matt Niskanen.

Marchand's history certainly played into the discipline, with the Department of Player Safety labeling him a repeat offender.

"While slew footing and clipping are not identical plays, they involve an attack on an opponent's lower body that can cause a defenseless player to crash dangerously to the ice," the video said.

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The suspension will cost Marchand $164,634.15, which will go to the Players' Emergency Fund. The Bruins will be without two of their top players for the Winter Classic, with Marchand suspended and David Krejci injured.

Marchand's father, Kevin, recently ruminated on creating outdoor rinks for his kids, adding, "That's why when you look at the Winter Classic coming up, outdoor game, I'm really, really excited for Brad to participate in this outdoor experience."

That's no longer the case.

Ice is nice

The Winter Classic rink is all set for Friday’s game.
The Winter Classic rink is all set for Friday’s game.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff/Globe Staff

Early reports on the ice conditions at Gillette Stadium have been good, with the weather reports seemingly lining up well for Friday's game. The Bruins took part in a family skate on Wednesday.

"Definitely different, a lot bigger," said Patrice Bergeron, one of only two Bruins slated to play Friday who also took part in the Winter Classic at Fenway Park in 2010. "I feel like actually the stands are closer, but it might just be the visual is a little different."

Asked about the conditions, Bergeron said, "The ice is pretty good. It got a little chippy at the end, but we'd been skating around for an hour. But it was pretty good."

Dan Craig, the NHL's icemaker extraordinaire, gave the ice a thumbs-up.

"Today is the calmest day that we've had here. Yesterday all of a sudden the wind came up and shifted and all of a sudden the sleets are going and rain started coming, and wow," Craig said. "We're fine [for Friday]. We're in good shape. They're telling me that we're going to have almost a double layer of clouds here, even though it's going to be a little bit warmer, so that's good."

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Quite a treat

Patrice Bergeron skated with his son, Zack, and his wife, Stephanie, at Gillette Stadium Wednesday.
Patrice Bergeron skated with his son, Zack, and his wife, Stephanie, at Gillette Stadium Wednesday.John Tlumacki/Globe Staff/Globe Staff

On Wednesday, the Bruins gave their families and friends a taste of what it will be like on Friday.

"It was great, definitely a great moment," Bergeron said. "A lot of fun to have a chance to skate with everyone's family and kids and wives. It was a fun hour."

Bergeron said he brought his newborn son, Zack, out onto the ice, though it doesn't seem he is taking after his father quite yet.

"He was sleeping the whole time," Bergeron said. "He really enjoyed his first skate."

Max Talbot's two-year-old son, Jaxson — whose mother is a professional figure skater Cynthia Phaneuf — got to be a little more active, producing a moment unlike any other for the veteran of four Winter Classics.

"It is, by far," Talbot said, when asked if the family skate was his new favorite Winter Classic memory. "Hopefully the two points and the game-winning goal will be after."

Local flavor

While Jimmy Hayes hasn't played in a Winter Classic, this won't be his first outdoor game, having played at Fenway Park while at Boston College. Asked where else he would like to see outdoor hockey in Massachusetts, Hayes said Harvard Stadium. The Dorchester native bought 22 tickets to the game for family and friends.

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Amalie Benjamin can be reached at abenjamin@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @amaliebenjamin.