Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak continued to play with twins telepathy in win over Montreal

Matt Kalman
February 13, 2020 - 12:01 am

They honored the Sedin twins in Vancouver on Wednesday.

Daniel and Henrik’s No. 22 and 33 were raised to the rafters and will never be worn by a Canucks player again.

Meanwhile across North America, the NHL’s modern-day dynamic duo was trying to steal the spotlight.

They’re not brothers, and in fact were born eight years apart. But when it comes to telepathy among linemates, it doesn’t get much better than Bruins wings Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak. They proved it in a 4-1 win against Montreal at TD Garden.

Pastrnak had his fourth hat trick of the season and the eight in the regular season of his career (he also has one in the playoffs). Marchand had three assists, including two on Pastrnak goals, and one on a dynamic play that would’ve made the Sedin brother proud (if they’ve managed to forgive Marchand for 2011 yet).

“We just caught them kind of flat-footed. And when I kind of got through, Pasta, he was kind of all alone. I knew if I got it over he’d get it in, he doesn’t miss those plays. So luckily he finished it,” modest Marchand said.

Pastrnak gave his linemate more credit for the goal that got the Bruins the early 1-0 lead.

“At first I drove really hard backdoor, kind of made it 2-on-2,” said Pastrnak, who leads the NHL with 41 goals. “But at some point I kind of gave up driving, I stopped skating, I was like ‘there’s no way he can make that play through three guys on his backhand.’ So great play by him. Obviously it was an easy play for him. And we all know how good a player he is and how good of playmaker he’s become.”

Pastrnak and Marchand’s center got into the act with an empty-net goal and an assist on Pastrnak’s third goal, a power-play score that came after Carey Price stopped Marchand’s one-timer and Montreal defenseman Jeff Petry cleared the puck right to Pastrnak’s stick.

Bergeron and Marchand have always had that sixth sense around each other, but their relationship is more father and son or uncle and nephew than brother to brother. Bergeron, now 34, might not be the filling in the Marchand-Pastrnak sandwich for many more years. But with Marchand now just 31 and Pastrnak 23, they could flank Bergeron and other centers for six, seven or eight more years. Let’s face it, they’ll be able to make any center look like Bergeron, a Sedin or any great forward the way their games have developed.

Marchand had a rocket-like rise from fourth-liner to top-six forward with a sniper’s touch and a Selke Trophy-worthy defensive game. He’s currently sixth in the NHL with 71 points after he had 100 points last season.

Pastrnak has come a long way from his days as an offensive-minded teenager and he’s tied for second in the NHL with 81 points. There’s no telling what he’ll accomplish this season or what his ceiling will be in the years ahead.

“Kind of scary to kind of look at where his ceiling might be,” Marchand said about Pastrnak. “He continues to push it and continues to get better. So it’s fun to watch, it’s fun to play with him. You always have to be on your toes because you never know what he’s going to do. I don’t think even he knows what he’s doing half the time. So it makes it very dangerous for other teams and other players when he’s so unpredictable. So he continues to grow, I’m excited to see where he’s going to be in a couple of years.”

After getting their numbers retired, the Sedin brothers’ next honor will be induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame in a few years. Their resume, though, will never have a Stanley Cup championship on it because of the exploits of Marchand, Bergeron and the rest of the 2011 Bruins.

Pastrnak was just 15 then, but it’s difficult to imagine him and Marchand having their numbers raised at the Garden without each of them having had their name etched on the Cup. They’re Boston’s “wonder twins” and they could someday, perhaps just a few months from now, be the Bruins’ “Cup champion twins” if general manager Don Sweeney makes the right moves at the NHL trade deadline and things go according to plan in the postseason.

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