The Minnesota Wild got 43 saves from goalie John Curry in his season debut en route to a 4-2 win over the St. Louis Blues last night. While Curry was doing the dirty work in the crease, Wild bruiser Mike Rupp got a bit too dirty when he leveled Warroad native and Blues star T.J. Oshie in the second period.
If you missed the hit, here's the video from Pro Hockey Talk.
Rupp clearly drives his shoulder into Oshie's face. Oshie immediately fell to the ice and was down for a moment. When he tried to get up he fell back to the ice. He was eventually helped to the locker room with blood dripping from his chin. The good news is that the United States' Olympic hero is listed as day-to-day with an upper-body injury, according to Blues head coach Ken Hitchcock.
Rupp, who was playing in his first game since the beginning of February, was given a match penalty for making a hit with "an intent to injure," according to Michael Russo of the Star Tribune. Russo wrote that the NHL didn't like the hit and Rupp will undoubtedly be suspended.
The situation forced Wild head coach Mike Yeo to sit Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu, Jason Pominville and Ryan Suter for the entire third period just in case the Blues were looking for revenge.
“I’m not going to put our top guys out there,” Yeo said. “Listen, we’ve played against this team enough times, we’ve gone into their building and often times we’ve done it without a ton of toughness and they’ve come at us. And so, I think it’s important that we show that we’re ready to be physical up against them if they’re going to try to play that game. It’s just about playing hard and we have to show that we can play in those type of games.
“That’s a great team over there. When they started to get very emotional about it, they ramped it up."
Minnesota, which has clinched the seventh seed in the Western Conference, closes the regular season on Sunday with a home game against the Nashville Predators.