NHLPA poll still can’t decide whether Marchand is best or worst trash-talker

Matt Kalman
March 31, 2020 - 3:40 pm

For the second straight year the NHLPA players’ poll was split on the antics of Bruins forward Brad Marchand.

Never mind that Marchand has significantly toned down his act the past couple seasons, he still carries the reputation as a yapper. And in a poll of almost 600 players Marchand was voted both the best and worst trash-talker for the second straight year.

As far as best trash-talker, Marchand got 25.87 percent of the vote ahead of Los Angeles’ Drew Doughty (13.37) and Vegas’ Ryan Reaves (11.05). Then in the worst trash-talker category Marchand got 10.59 percent, with Doughty again finishing second at 6.85 percent. Obviously a large portion of the NHLPA membership appreciates what the likes of Marchand and Doughty do with their lips, and another portion is appalled by their words. Heaven forbid there’s a little trash talk to spice up the action.

Marchand showed up in a few other categories. He took third place for funniest player with 5.68 percent, behind winner Keith Yandle of Florida (17.98) and Doughty (6.94). Marchand was voted the third-best social media follow with 4.37 percent, behind P.K. Subban of New Jersey (13.59) and Alex Ovechkin of Washington (6.31).

Marchand and Patrice Bergeron tied for fourth place in the polling for best NHL “bromance.” They got 3.67 percent of the vote while the winners, David Perron and Ryan O’Reilly of St. Louis, got 6.42 percent.

Bergeron took fourth place for the player (any position) that the other players would want on their team if they had to win one game. Bergeron got 3.33 percent of the vote, while Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby (44.03), Edmonton’s Connor McDavid (30.53) and Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon (4.11) came in win, place and show, respectively.

Bergeron took second place for “most complete player” with 25.44 percent of the vote to Crosby’s 45.56.

David Pastrnak’s nickname “Pasta” proved popular and took second place in the best nickname category with 7.31 percent of the vote to Tomas “Tuna” Tatar of Montreal (8.08).

Bobby Orr took second place for player “past or present, who would you pay to see play?” Orr got 14.99 percent to Wayne Gretzky’s 31.83.

There were a couple off-ice categories that might show NHL players want to show a little personality than they have in the past. Asked if they would like to see players express personality on equipment, 40.57 percent said they’d like to do something with their skates.

And 73 percent of players voted to be more flexible with players’ wardrobes off the ice like the NBA. Right now every team enforces a suit and tie policy for traveling, and entering and leaving the arena.

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