Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Brooks Orpik injury update: Pittsburgh Penguins place defenseman on IR

Injury woes continue to be a major storyline for the Pittsburgh Penguins this season. This time it’s Brooks Orpik going on the IR after he was hauled down from behind and punched twice in the head by Shawn Thornton on Saturday night. Orpik was taken off the ice on a stretcher after being knocked unconscious by Thornton.

There’s really no excuse for Thornton’s actions here, regardless of who you cheer for on any given night.

Thornton won’t face his in-person hearing until the middle of this week. Meanwhile, the Penguins are going to have to move forward without Orpik in the lineup for the foreseeable future.

In a related move, Pittsburgh recalled defenseman Brian Dumoulin from the AHL to fill in. The Penguins are badly beaten up on the blue line at this point, and now are without three of their top four defensemen. Paul Martin and Rob Scuderi are both already injured, and the Penguins’ organizational depth is being put to the test in a big way right now.

Tags: Brooks Orpik Brooks Orpik Injury NHL Pittsburgh Penguins

  • Matt

    Too bad the original poster failed to mention that 2 Bruins were injured and one was kneed in the head while he was on the ice. Orpik delivered a blindside headshot on a player who was ineligible to be hit. Eriksson never touched the puck let alone possession. And Dupuis 2-handed Chris Kelly FRACTURING his fibula. Poor Penguins… If Orpik had faced the music in the beginning, this incident never would have happened. If you want to throw dirty hits on star players, you’ve got to man up and fight the fighters. Also if those 2 short jabs were enough to seriously injure Orpik, I suggest he find a new role on his hockey team…

  • rh

    Matt, you are SO right! I can’t really feel sorry for Orpik. With his past history…remember the hit on Erik Cole that broke his neck and almost ended his career? In the game Orpik had already given Erikson another concussion and whimped out and would not drop gloves at the time. Personally I feel that the NHL turns a blind eye to Orpik because he is the enforcer for “the face of the NHL – Crosby”. NHL…you turned a blind eye too many times. Orpik got what was coming to him. He just chose the wrong team to bully.

  • LiberalAlert

    Don’t feel sorry for Orpik at all. A couple of quick shots by Thorton, just not that vicious, more of a fluke. What Orpik did to Errikson was worse, Kelly getting a broken bone by a slash, Neal intentionally targeting Marchand’s head while he was down.

  • nate

    it seriously funny how you people think it was still deserved. what ever happens doesn’t deserve for this to happen. sure he might have knee’d the guy in the head, intentional or not doens’t deserve for a reaction like this. As for the 2 punches its because he already had a head injury not major enough to keep him off the ice. Orpik wasn’t even the one who delievered the shot to the head, still doesn’t mean he deserves to be sucker punched and injured for it, Because of what thorton did Orpik will face nothing at all except for not being able to play. All in all since your siding with a sucker punching player. Your saying how throwing a dirty hit on a player is SO bad yet your defending one who not only decided to go after Orpik decided that he’s gonna grab him from BEHIND pull him down without letting him try to defend himself and attack him. No matter how you look at this its still HITTING FROM BEHIND! Also Neal is the player who knee’d the player in the head, so he is the one who would have to face the punishment. The fact of the matter is its a physical sport people will get hurt while playing BUT dont deserve to get sucker punched and attacked from behind. I’m not defending Neal nor am i defending Thorton simply stating that an ATTACK from behind should result in suspension if not dismissal from the nhl. It seems like even hockey in a controlled enviroment means take the punishment into your own hands. you can defend Thorton all your want just shows that you think like him and think hitting from behind is fine. This is why all these stupid rules have to come into play is because of players like thorton who take matters into their own hand and attack people out of rage just to hurt somebody. As for the 2 bruins that were injured, they are playing a physical sport, injuries that way are bound to happen if you dont like that they got injuried in this game then i suggest you find a new sport to watch or a new hobbie like knitting. those 2 injuries have nothing to do with Orpik.

    • Matt

      Just how dense are you? Seriously? Thornton gave Orpik a chance to “defend” himself when he challenged him to fight in the beginning. And when did I say Orpik kneed anyone? Re-read my comment you meat stick. Obviously Orpik had something to do with the 2 injuries seeing as how he was the one who delivered the BLINDSIDE HEADSHOT to Loui Eriksson which caused one of these 2 injuries. But Orpik supposedly had nothing to do with that? And seeing as how I’m a Bruins fan, clearly I understand that it’s a physical sport. What it is not is a sport that condones headshots, 2-handed slashes or knees to the head. Stop trying to justify the Penguins’ cheap shots and go back to admiring your Sidney Crosby dolls. Bottom line, Orpik laid a dirty hit on a star player and wasn’t man enough to face the music. I don’t agree completely with how Thornton handled it but, hey, I think they got the message. As I said earlier, if Orpik fought Thornton when he first challenged him, none of this would’ve happened.