Bryan Marchment, a feared enforcer who played nearly 1,000 NHL games over 17 seasons and the father of Florida Panthers forward Mason, has died.
Marche was 53 years old.
Marchment was an amateur scout with the San Jose Sharks – a team with which he played most of his NHL career – and was preparing in Montreal for the upcoming NHL Draft when he died.
The cause of death was not immediately known.
“It’s heartbreaking,” Florida Panthers general manager Bill Zito said from his team’s headquarters in Montreal.
“Obviously our thoughts and prayers are with Mason and his family…it’s awful and I just can’t express our prayers and thoughts enough. It certainly puts this game in perspective. I met Bryan a few times I didn’t really know him, but the (hockey) world here is shocked so many people at GM meetings had such great things to say about Bryan.
Mason Marchment spent part of the last three seasons with the Panthers after being acquired in a trade with Toronto in 2020.
He had a stellar season with Florida this year, scoring 18 goals and 47 points in 54 games.
A pending free agent, the Panthers are working with Mason on a new contract although he could sign with another team as soon as next week.
In March, Mason Marchment traveled to San Jose as a first-time player when the Panthers took on the Sharks.
During a chat with Florida Hockey Now, Bryan Marchment opened up about his son’s development and the long road it took him to get to the NHL.
Mason Marchment went undrafted after starting to play hockey much later than his contemporaries.
But he worked hard at the game – and it paid off.
“He has, by far, come a lot further than I thought he would,” Bryan Marchment said.
“I’m very proud of him.”
NHL Insider Kevin Weekes was the first to report Marchment’s death.
“Bryan’s love of hockey was unparalleled,” the San Jose Sharks said in a statement. “He was among the most dedicated, physical and fierce players to ever play the game.”
Mike Grier, the Sharks’ new general manager, was a teammate of Bryan’s with the Edmonton Oilers and spoke to the media in Montreal on Wednesday.
“Anyone who knew Bryan, you know the kind of man he was, just an honest, down-to-earth loving person who cared about everyone,” Grier said according to San Jose Hockey Now.
“He had time for everyone in the building. He was great with me my early years in Edmonton, treated me with respect right away, made me feel at home. …
“It’s a very difficult day for our staff. When you’re Scouting, you spend a lot of time together on the road and in meetings. It’s a very moving day, very hard for the group. Give them time to regroup and have time for themselves in the process and grieve and we’ll come back to that tomorrow.
“I know Mush, that’s what he would say. He would want us to get back to work and do our best and have the best draft possible.
Besides Mason, Marchment is survived by his wife Kim and daughter Logan.