Boston Bruins

Jan 23, 2018; Boston, MA: New Jersey Devils left wing Marcus Johansson gets elbowed by Boston Bruins left wind Brad Marchand during the third period at TD Garden. (Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports)

Jan 23, 2018; Boston, MA: New Jersey Devils left wing Marcus Johansson gets elbowed by Boston Bruins left wind Brad Marchand during the third period at TD Garden. (Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports)

By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com

The Bruins’ newest trade acquisition once got a serious injury at the hands of Brad Marchand. You’d think there’s a chance that could cause issues internally – but according to Marcus Johansson and Don Sweeney, apparently not.

Speaking to reporters at his post-trade deadline press conference on Monday, Sweeney fielded questions about the Bruins’ acquisition of Johansson from the New Jersey Devils and the circumstances surrounding it. Bruins fans may remember Johansson from an incident with his now-teammate Marchand, who swiped at the back of Johansson’s head with his elbow in a game on Jan. 23, 2018. Marchand received a five-game suspension for the elbow, while Johansson missed 53 games with a concussion and didn’t return until the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs in April.

But ask Johansson, and he’s ostensibly put it behind him. Via Conor Ryan of the Boston Sports Journal, Sweeney said Johansson told him on the trade: “I’d much rather play with Marchand than against him.”

If Johansson is willing to bury the proverbial hatchet with Marchand, he’s significantly changing his tune from his comments after the incident in question. Two months after it happened, when he returned to practice for the Devils, he didn’t hold back much in his assessment of Marchand’s antics.

“I hope it doesn’t come to him ending someone else’s career before it’s enough,” Johansson said. “That’s not why we play the game. I think there are always situations where you try and hit someone and you try to make a hockey play, and things can go wrong. Then there are plays like this, [a play] that has nothing to do with hockey. So it’s sad to see, and I guess I’m unfortunate to be on the receiving end of that.”

Marchand expressed contrition when meeting with reporters after being handed his suspension. For what it’s worth, he hasn’t gotten in serious trouble with Player Safety since. All he’s done is become a serial face-licker.

“I let my teammates down – I know that – and I let the organization down,” Marchand said in part. I have to be better, there’s no question.”

Johansson is certainly right about one thing. Independent of crossing lines, Marchand has always been a tough player to play against. Now that the two share a locker room, hopefully they’re ready to handle this like pros and move forward with an eye toward a Cup run.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at matthew.dolloff@bbgi.com.