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Video: Penguins’ Orpik stretchered off ice; Bruins’ Thornton given match penalty

Dec 7, 2013, 7:48 PM EDT

Brooks Orpik was stretchered off the ice in the first period of Saturday’s game between his Pittsburgh Penguins and the Boston Bruins.

Orpik was grabbed by Bruins’ enforcer Shawn Thornton, taken down to the ice and punched in the head, including when the Penguins’ defenseman was on the ice. The incident occurred during a scrum, after Penguins’ forward James Neal had been called for kneeing.

On the first shift of the game, Orpik delivered a hard open-ice hit on Bruins’ forward Loui Eriksson, who left the game and will not be returning. Thornton challenged Orpik to a fight immediately after his hit on Eriksson, and Orpik continued with his shift.

Thornton received a match penalty, and could be facing further disciplinary action from the National Hockey League.

184 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. steelers88 - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    Seriously man. Hoping people die in a plane crash? I really can’t stand the Bruins right now but I would never wish for someone to die yes even Thorton. Real classy man.

    • seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 10:02 AM

      That’s just the classy Penguins fans or rather Pittsburgh fans.

  2. hazlydose - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:08 PM

    For any wondering, the Penguins have announced that Orpik was taken to the hospital and is both conscious and alert.

  3. shamu1the1whale - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    WTH?? When is stuff like this going to stop? Just unbelievable. Hope Orpik will be ok… Good on Bergeron to help the med staff to pull the stretcher onto the ice, shows he cares. Does anyone know what Coach Julien was talking about after the incident? Was he yelling at the Pens bench? Couldn’t tell from the video clip.

    • hazlydose - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:27 PM

      It looked like Grenato (pens assistant) was talking to the Bruins bench as well when they cut to the pens bench. Probably both sides kind of agreeing that things got out of hand as well as some yelling about the incident.

      • shamu1the1whale - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:40 PM

        Gotcha. Thanks!!

  4. ducksk - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    Sucker punching is beyond all. Period. Ultimate act of a true coward. And if it ends another career oh well? Its 2013 not 1975. And Brett Favre wouldn’t want his son to play football. All you bare knuckle fight fans, use your thumbs when you hoist your red solo cups to Thortan the coward. Goon is way to kind.

    • drone501 - Dec 8, 2013 at 10:45 AM

      agree. on of the most cowardless acts ive ever seen. you never punch a guy when he’s down on the ice. a real no class act. like i said before thornton needs savarded. put this piece of garbage out of the game for good. but don” want him to get brain cancer. lol

      • seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 12:52 PM

        Ya not like kicking a guy in the back of the head from behind huh ?

    • seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 9:33 AM

      The funny thing is the Penguins fans feigning outrage aver Thornton to dismiss the real scumbag Neal for kneeing Marchand in the head while he was prone and defenseless.Thornton punched Orpik and knocked him out,Neal intentionally kneed a guy in the head!!! Neal is a twice suspended scumbag and he is the one who should get tossed for the rest of the season.Thornton has NEVER been suspended and is one of the most respected fighters in the league who lost his cool and should be suspended but for 3-5 games not more than that for 1st offense….

  5. crusty14 - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:23 PM

    One of your classy penguin fan pals also wished Thornton gets brain cancer ! Now thats real class!

    • hazlydose - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:28 PM

      Every fan base has its morons.

  6. drewzducks - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:28 PM

    I’m just glad that all of these Pens fans aren’t hypocrites and were equally as disgusted when their Mr. Cooke ended Marc Savard’s career.

    • hazlydose - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:30 PM

      Matt Cooke’s disgusting act was a hockey play. If you want to compare this to something try Bertuzzi on Moore or McSorely on Brashear.

  7. muckleflugga - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:36 PM

    much ado about nothing really…

    orpik clattered an unprotected player without the puck, nothing new there…then he went full chicken, nothing new there

    thornton swung down from his home in the trees and did his thing, but did not use excessive force in the cuffing in spite of the attendant hysterics that followed…

    bad manners, going after a guy on the ice, but that’s common practice seen in nearly every fight these day; ditto the knee on the sainted marchand, same old same old, nail a guy when he’s down

    where’s the much ballyhooed and mythical ‘code’ one might ask

    where’s the respect

    • micasa81 - Dec 8, 2013 at 11:05 AM

      “thornton swung down from his home in the trees”


  8. steelers88 - Dec 7, 2013 at 9:58 PM

    Sucks how the NHL still condones violence. Every other sport has moved to protect the players. The NHL still allows bare knuckle boxing. Stupid.

  9. cheetah440 - Dec 7, 2013 at 10:00 PM

    How many more Bruins need to be knocked out of the game of hockey by Penguin cheap shots? Good on Thorton. Orpik had it coming and deserved a beating.

  10. steelers88 - Dec 7, 2013 at 10:04 PM

    The Bruins suck. Thorton sucks. Boston sucks. Man your classy. Your just a big jerk.

    • cheetah440 - Dec 7, 2013 at 10:46 PM

      You’re. Idiot.

      actually the Bruins won the game. They don’t suck.

    • seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 9:42 AM

      BAAHAAAA.He’s just a big meanie!!!! Oh wait your Steelers fan that explains the the level of thought that went into this post..

  11. steelers88 - Dec 7, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    Go suck a dick.

    • seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 9:44 AM

      Does your mom know your on the computer again? I didn’t know there was a computer in her basement..

    • seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 9:46 AM

      The really funny thing is the 17 thumbs up to dick sucking by Penguins fans.They all must be Crosby fans…

  12. mattyboy1763 - Dec 7, 2013 at 10:18 PM

    Everyone is acting like he was throwing huge punches.. most of those shots happen every time in a fight. It sucks he got stretchered off but give me a break here. Typical Penguin behavior saying that a guy who has never been suspended for should be out of the league? But yet Matt cooke’s PLAYS are typical hockey plays. Keep complaining about headshots penguin fans. why don’t you look at the Neal shot. That is so much worse than a noogie to the head.

  13. mc321984 - Dec 7, 2013 at 11:17 PM

  14. micasa81 - Dec 7, 2013 at 11:31 PM

    Apologies if this ends up being a double post, but it looks like it got filtered out ’cause I used too many bad words first time around.


    There’s no justifying what either Thornton or Neal did. At the beginning of the season I posted about how ridiculous it is that players seem to think it’s their job to decide when an opponent crossed the line, or whether he “deserves” some payback. Newsflash: you aren’t the referee! Why on earth do we think this self-policing “code” has any place in the game? You’ve got players gunning for the Marchands of the league just because there’s some vague notion that he’s dirty and needs to be put in his place. Well, guess what Neal? You’ve now removed any doubt that you are a dirty SOB when you take to the ice. Then there are the big, clean hits like Orpik’s, where the refs have already declined to call a penalty (and if you think it should have been a penalty, you’re missing the point; it was a hit that at least bears a close resemblance to a legal play). Why the hell should Orpik be obligated to fight in this situation? If you think he deserves some payback, wait for your chance during the run of play, and deliver a big hit of your own! Thornton is perfectly capable of doing that. Self-policing just leads to a ridiculous back-and-forth between teams, both sides believing that justice is on their side, and it’s their right to deliver payback. Absolute BS.

  15. drewsylvania - Dec 8, 2013 at 1:19 AM

    Thornton deserves everything he gets and more. I’d suspend him for half the season without pay. But they should treat hits like Orpik’s on Eriksson similarly.

    This game tonight should be the example by which they drastically increase the penalties for attempting to injure. find out exactly what would prevent the players from doing stuff like this, then implement it. It’s obvious that the threat of 3-10 games off doesn’t mean dick. You have to change the culture, and that means punishments that matter and making examples.

    League, do the right f**king thing.

    • hattrk - Dec 10, 2013 at 1:03 AM

      I have a simple way of changing the culture: suspend the player and punish the team. When a player is suspended, the team loses that roster spot for the duration of the suspension. If a player is supsended 5 games, the team only gets to dress 17 skaters for those 5 games. If a player is a repeat offender, a team is less likely to resign that player as they are costing the team. Thoughts?

  16. drewsylvania - Dec 8, 2013 at 1:22 AM

    Principle point of contact on Orpik hit was the head. Not legal.

  17. drewsylvania - Dec 8, 2013 at 1:23 AM

    There would be no need for self-policing if the league would do something about it

    • micasa81 - Dec 8, 2013 at 2:35 AM

      There’s no need for it period. Your inability to differentiate between the severity of Thornton’s actions compared to Orpik’s is pretty much a case in point of how futile it is to expect that someone biased toward one team – especially if that person is an actual member of the team – is a good person to invest with the responsibility to hold other players accountable.

  18. drewsylvania - Dec 8, 2013 at 1:24 AM

    And James Neal is officially the new Matt Cooke. Congrats, Pittsburgh.

  19. mp1131211 - Dec 8, 2013 at 3:20 AM

    What a piece if utter s***!! F*** him and f*** the bruins.

  20. fbothharbaughs - Dec 8, 2013 at 9:27 AM

    Typical Thornton… & u Boston sissies complain(ed) about Cooke….

    • seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 10:16 AM

      No sissy would be a player who throws a cheap shot then runs and hides when fronted. That is typical Penguins hockey,play dirty and then turtle and draw a penalty instead of manning up they hide behind the officials. That my friend is a sissy

  21. the8man - Dec 8, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    These two teams need to get this under control. If it escalates any farther, there will blood on the ice. Not defending anyone in this game. Both sides had guys do hideous things. Which is why someone needs to intervene and get these squads to cool off before they play again.

  22. sillysporty - Dec 8, 2013 at 3:52 PM

    Wwwwaaaahhhhhhhh that’s all I read !

  23. ralphwilsonisrich - Dec 8, 2013 at 7:19 PM

    John Scott will take of Thorton for ya

  24. seanobi - Dec 9, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    For all the little crying Penguins fans who want to hang Thornton,look at the REAL scumbag of the night Neal.He’s a twice suspended for head shots scumbag.Thornton has been in the NHL for over 10 years playing the same role (enforcer) ans has NEVER been suspended Neal has been in the NHL for a few years and has been suspended TWICE.If anybody deserves a season long suspension it’s Neal,oh but wait I’m sure all of you hypocritical Pens fans will somehow justify or minimize Neals blatant attempt to injure as a ” hockey play”. So before you post another “kill Thornton ” post look at the dirtbags on your own team Orpik included. All Thornton did was punch Orpik ( with gloves on) and knocked him out.Can you say “glass jaw” he never hit his head on the ice from being dragged down by Thornton watch the video.Thornton grabs him by the collar holds him off the ice then punches him with no winding up or wild swings….

  25. kingfish4664 - Dec 12, 2013 at 8:28 PM

    I am a Boston Fan Thru and Thru. I agree with Thornton himself, not his finest hour. I would like to run the timeline by the blog and get some honest objective feed back. Orpik was down and out and unconcious for at least 30 seconds, even verified by Coach Bylsma. He was x ported to Mass. General Hospital for treatment. He was back showering in the Garden in time to catch the bus to Logan for flight back to Pitt. Wheels up 2345 P.M.Predicated upon transport time and the like his treatment was approx. 70-85 Minutes. He was xported admitted examined and evaluated, ultimately released in time to catch all of the Penguins travel arrangement. We all are too familiar with serious concussions in this city of Boston… We know how serious and nasty they can be. This man was out cold 30 seconds…. Showed the inability to remember much of the incident let alone the game….. And he was in and out as if he were getting a flu shot. I in no way am trying to be facetious or funny. I am only comparing to a process we all go through via the Emergency Room. Also the next day Orpik was placed on IR… Now standard in the NHL for serious to possible head trauma. Even Coach Bylsma stated he was doing a lot better and was not exhibiting any of the symptoms of a concussion, thankfully I believe is how he described it. Please know when Orpik won the National Championship for Boston College, he was considered a superstar hero… Teammates also viewed him as a sneak, and a weasle. Capable of just about anything that suited his way of playing. Anyways… Please read do the math and if you want throw up some comments let me know what you think…. The facts as well as common sense math do not lie!

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