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Marchand: Bruins' stars taking less money a key to sustained success

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Brad Marchand believes the Boston Bruins' run as one of the most consistent teams in the NHL is due, in part, to the players taking contracts below market value.

"Guys have tried to take less to win because we know that it bleeds through the lineup," Marchand said Wednesday ahead of Boston's matchup with the Toronto Maple Leafs, per Sportsnet.

"If you can have six guys that make lower salary (rather) than three, it's a lot harder to play against. And that's why we've been so good for so long."

The Bruins possess some of the most team-friendly contracts in the league. Marchand, who's been a first- or second-team All-Star in four of the past six seasons, is under contract for two campaigns beyond 2022-23 with a $6.125-million cap hit. Marchand signed his eight-year pact in September 2016 - right before he blossomed into one of the game's best wingers.

Additionally, captain Patrice Bergeron, who's vying for his sixth career Selke Trophy at age 37, re-signed with the Bruins on a one-year, $2.5-million agreement in the offseason. Second-line center David Krejci, who's collected 41 points in 45 games this season, makes just $1 million on the salary cap.

Leading scorer David Pastrnak also comes with a bargain $6.67-million cap hit, but he could cash in this offseason as a pending unrestricted free agent.

The Bruins have missed the playoffs just four times in the salary-cap era, making three trips to the Stanley Cup Final in that span, winning once in 2011. They sit atop the NHL standings this season with a 38-7-5 record.

Marchand: Bruins' stars taking less money a key to sustained success
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