Shawn Thornton was ejected in the first period of Saturday’s Bruins-Penguins game at TD Garden after bringing Pittsburgh defenseman Brooks Orpik to the ice and landing a punch to the head.
Orpik laid on the ice for several minutes as medical staff attended to him. He was then taken off the ice on a stretcher and sent to Massachusetts General Hospital, where he is alert and conscious, according to the Penguins.
Thornton received a match penalty and could face further discipline from the NHL’s Department of Player Safety. The incident happened just seconds after Penguins winger James Neal was given a two-minute penalty for kneeing Brad Marchand while the Bruins forward laid on the ice.
Thornton had tried to get Orpik to drop his gloves earlier in the first period after the Penguins blueliner delivered a hit on Bruins winger Loui Eriksson, who left the game as a result and won’t return.
A replay of the incident is in the video below.