Brad Marchand stuns fans with honest thoughts about the rivalry with the Toronto Maple Leafs; nobody expected him to be this honest

The best time of the year is finally upon us.

The Stanley Cup playoff is here, and we have some amazing games to look forward to in the first round.

The perhaps most hyped-up meeting is between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Boston Bruins, and it’s not the first time they’re playing each other in the postseason.

Brad Marchand has absolutely tormented the Maple Leafs throughout most of his career.

And it’s really special for him.

The Maple Leafs were his favorite team growing up. To absolutely no one’s surprise, he had Darcy Tucker and Doug Gilmour as his favorites.

OTTAWA, ON – JANUARY 25: Boston Bruins Left Wing Brad Marchand (63) before a face-off during second period National Hockey League action between the Boston Bruins and Ottawa Senators on January 25, 2024, at Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, ON, Canada. (Photo by Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire)

But now, he’s all about the Boston Bruins, serving as the team captain.

Although the Bruins have been the more successful team of the two throughout his career, he doesn’t take anything for granted during the first round of this year’s playoffs.

“They’re always extremely competitive,” Marchand said via’s Amalie Benjamin. “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.”

BUFFALO, NY – MARCH 19: Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins prepares for a faceoff against the Buffalo Sabres during an NHL game on March 19, 2023 at KeyBank Center in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images)

But Marchand also gave his honest assessment of the rivalry between the two Original Six franchises.

The Bruins’ greatest rivals have been the Montreal Canadiens looking back. But now, Marchand stunned fans by claiming that the Maple Leafs have surpassed the Habs, given their recent history.

“You see the excitement they have all throughout Canada when they’re in playoffs,” Marchand said. “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.

“They’ve probably surpassed Montreal and any other team with kind of where our rivalry’s gone, just because we’ve both been so competitive with each other, and we’ve had a few playoff series. It definitely brings the emotion, the intensity, up in the games and the excitement for the fans.”

DALLAS, TEXAS – NOVEMBER 06: Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins is congratulated by his bench after scoring a goal during the third period against the Dallas Stars at American Airlines Center on November 06, 2023 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Sam Hodde/Getty Images)

Marchand himself has been involved in controversial incidents over the year and just earlier this season as well.

When the teams played in a game on Nov. 2, Marchand drove Timothy Liljegren into the boards, resulting in the defenseman being placed on LTIR. That certainly won’t be forgotten when they play their first game on Saturday. 

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