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Pens not sure they'll have Staal on Wednesday

Tuesday, 02.01.2011 / 11:52 PM / NHL Insider

By Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

NEW YORK -- The Penguins don't expect to know until Wednesday if center Jordan Staal will face any supplementary discipline from the NHL for the match penalty he received after punching Rangers forward Brandon Prust in the face late in the second period of Tuesday's 4-3 shootout win at Madison Square Garden.

Staal hit the Prust with his left fist and sent him spinning to the ice at the end of a scrum in front of the Rangers' bench. The officials first sent Staal to the box and then sent him to the dressing room with a match penalty.

The NHL rulebook states that "in addition to the match penalty, the player shall be automatically suspended from further competition until the Commissioner has ruled on the issue." Pittsburgh is scheduled to host the Islanders on Wednesday night.

"I'm sure already have looked at the situation and will make a judgment on that," Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said. "That's not our call."

Prust cleared out Tyler Kennedy with a hard hit, then got his elbow up on Staal, who appeared to be coming into the fray to defend Kennedy. Staal returned the favor on Prust, dropping him to the ice with a quick left hook.

Ryan Callahan scored the game-tying power-play goal with 12.5 seconds left in the second period during the five-minute power play.

Staal was not made available to the media following the Penguins' victory, but Bylsma expressed his displeasure with the match penalty.

"I wasn't particularly fond of the call," he said. "It certainly was a scrum and both guys were taking their shots and I'm not sure the penalty was warranted."

Prust admitted he was dazed by the punch.

"He just caught me on my sweet spot and kind of dropped me for a second," Prust said. "He kind of rung my bell."

Prust didn't play for the rest of the second period, but he returned in the third.

"They checked me out. I'm good," he said. "I think it was just all reaction. I came in and hit a guy, he kind of came in to stick up for him. He just threw a punch and happened to connect."

Follow Dan Rosen on Twitter at:
@drosennhl

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