Ottawa Senators defenseman Dion Phaneuf delivered a huge check to Pittsburgh Penguins forward Bryan Rust early in Monday’s Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final, forcing Rust to head to the Penguins locker room.
The play happened in the first five minutes of the first period as the Penguins rushed up the ice. Pittsburgh captain Sidney Crosby fed Rust the puck and then Phaneuf slid over and slammed into Rust.
Rust was slow to get up and then went to the locker room. Phaneuf was not penalized.
Later in the game Phaneuf delivered another big open-ice hit, this time on Penguins forward Jake Guentzel. Guentzel stayed in the game after this play.
Losing Rust for any period of time would be tough for the Penguins. He has five goals in 13 playoff games this season and had 15 goals and 28 points in 57 games during the regular season. The Penguins are already playing this game with forward Patric Hornqvist, though Pittsburgh got back forward Carl Hagelin who had missed the Penguins’ previous two postseason games.
Penguins coach Mike Sullivan did not have an update on Rust after the game, a 1-0 win by Pittsburgh.
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