PITTSBURGH — It didn’t take long for the first controversial incident of the Stanley Cup Final.
Patrick Marleau‘s illegal check to the head on Bryan Rust — one that earned Marleau a minor penalty, and forced Rust to exit the game — left Rust day-to-day with an upper-body injury, per Pens head coach Mike Sullivan.
When asked what he thought of the hit, Sullivan was blunt.
“It’s a blindside hit to the head,” he said. “[Marleau] gets a penalty and I’m sure the league will look at it.”
Marleau wasn’t saying much about the incident following the game, but did suggest he wasn’t expecting supplemental discipline:
“I just tried to keep everything down,” Marleau added. “I didn’t want to get too high on him.”
It’ll be interesting to see what transpires. There hasn’t been a suspension in the Stanley Cup Final since Vancouver’s Aaron Rome was given a four-game ban for his massive hit on Boston forward Nathan Horton.
Marleau has no history with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety.