Pens' Orpik (concussion) placed on injured reserve

Pens' Orpik (concussion) placed on injured reserve
December 10, 2013, 12:15 am
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The Pittsburgh Penguins announced that they’ve placed defenseman Brooks Orpik on injured reserve with a concussion, and that means he’ll be out at least a week dating back to last Saturday’s game with the Bruins. That’s where Orpik was taken down from behind with a slew foot from Shawn Thornton, and knocked out by the B’s enforcer after being punched twice in the head while defenseless on the ice.  

Orpik was taken off the ice on a stretcher after he regained consciousness and treated at Mass General Hospital for a concussion, and Penguins coach Dan Bylsma told reporters that he was suffering from back and neck pain along with a headache following the incident.

“(Sunday) he definitely had soreness because of the situation in the neck and back and had a headache,” Bylsma said. “He’s dealing with a concussion. I don’t know how long that’s going to be.”

The fact Orpik was able to fly home with the Penguins following Saturday’s game pointed toward a less severe concussion in the grand scheme of things, but a brain injury is never considered anything less than a serious injury. Thornton’s hearing with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety isn’t expected to take place until Thursday or Friday of this week, and the B’s enforcer is facing a lengthy suspension given the regrettable way things went down on the ice.

Orpik’s concussion will certainly be a factor in the eventual suspension for Thornton, where a reckless action causing injury tends to yield a more severe punishment than one that doesn’t cause an injury.