NHL News: Sharks GM Doug Wilson taking medical leave; Bruins’ Marchand may face discipline for taunting Panarin

The New York Rangers beat the Boston Bruins 5-2 in the NHL’s Thanksgiving Showdown. However, it’s what Brad Marchand said to Artemi Panarin after the game that’s making the headlines.

Panarin drove the Blueshirts offense with two points including the game-winner in the third period. Another disappointing Bruins loss put Marchand in an even worse mood than usual sparking the incident.

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Marchand may be disciplined for Russian taunt to Panarin

Late in the game Marchand can be seen arguing with Panarin. The confrontation ended with Panarin throwing his glove and both players being tossed from the game. Each received 10 minute misconducts.

When asked about what was said Marchand laughingly downplayed it the incident. “We were just talking about what we had at Thanksgiving and he didn’t like what I ate,” he joked.

One Rangers didn’t think it was funny at all. Ryan Strome, who was within earshot took offense to the taunts.

“I don’t want to comment, I don’t think it’s my place” Strome said. “Yeah, I guess we’ll see what happens.”

Multiple reports indicate that the nature of the comments made by Marchand towards Panarin involved Vladimir Putin and a sentiment that no Russians like him.

The remarks by Marchand referenced unfounded allegations made by his former KHL coach which was politically motivated. Panarin required a leave of absence to deal with the matter.

According to Larry Brooks the Rangers contacted the league about the comments.

It should also be noted that Marchand was wearing a microphone for the nationally televised game so ABC should have exactly what he said recorded.

What remains to be seen is what the NHL will do? If the microphone picked up what Marchand said, the league should review it to determine if his comments rose to the level of a fine or suspension.

Sharks GM takes medical leave

San Jose Sharks general manager Doug Wilson is taking a temporary medical leave from his day-to-day responsibilities, the organization announced Friday.

Per the team, assistant general manager Joe Will will handle the team’s day-to-day operations on an interim basis.

Wilson, 64, has served as the Sharks’ general manager since May 13, 2003. He was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2020, with the induction ceremony taking place earlier this month after being delayed by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Sharks (10-8-1) host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Friday.

–Field Level Media contributed to this report