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Penguins' Orpik leaves game on stretcher

The SportsXchange

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik left the game Saturday night against the Bruins in Boston on a stretcher after taking two punches to the head from winger Shawn Thornton.

During a scrum in the first period that resulted from Penguins winger James Neal's knee to the head of Bruins winger Brad Marchand, Thornton pulled Orpik to the ice from behind and punched him twice in the head with a gloved hand.

Orpik was motionless on the ice and was attended to by trainers and doctors from both teams before being stretchered out.

After a brief visit to Massachusetts General Hospital, Orpik was cleared to travel with the team back to Pittsburgh, according to Penguins coach Dan Bylsma.

Thornton received a match penalty on the play while Neal received a two-minute minor. Both should expect to hear from the league office in the near future.

Earlier in the contest, Orpik knocked Bruins winger Loui Eriksson out of the game with an open-ice hit.
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