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Brad Marchand ordered by NHL to stop licking opponents

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are always fraught with tension, animosity and oftentimes outright hostility in hotly contested series between two warring teams. But Boston Bruins star Brad Marchand received a directive from the league to refrain from one patently bizarre act of “aggression” against opponents: Stop licking them.

During Game 1 of the Bruins’ first-round series against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Marchand appeared to lick — or at the very least get up close and personal — Leo Komarov.

According to ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski, a league spokesperson has confirmed a report from Sportsnet indicating that the NHL has ordered Marchand to stop engaging in such antics.

Marchand, who had three goals and six assists in the Bruins’ seven-game, first-round win over the Maple Leafs heading into an Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Tampa Bay Lightning — later explained his odd interaction with Komarov.

“I thought he wanted to cuddle. I just wanted to get close to him,” Marchand said of the incident. “He keeps trying to get close to me. I don’t know if he’s got a thing for me or what. He’s cute.”

There you have it.