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Eric Staal of Wild leaves Game 5 in second period

Forward out of hospital after falling headfirst into boards against Blues

by Jessi Pierce / Correspondent

Staal leaves after hitting boards

STL@MIN, Gm5: Staal leaves game after scary collision

R1, Gm5: Eric Staal clips Jake Allen's skate and slides hard into the boards, forcing him to leave the game in the 2nd period

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ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Minnesota Wild forward Eric Staal was released from the hospital after being helped from the ice in the second period of Game 5 against the St. Louis Blues at Xcel Energy Center on Saturday.

Staal was heading toward the net to attempt a shot when he made contact with the right leg of St. Louis goalie Jake Allen and then slid headfirst into the boards.

The Blues defeated the Wild 4-3 in overtime to eliminate Minnesota from the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the best-of-7 Western Conference First Round.

"I felt bad for the guy," Minnesota defenseman Ryan Suter said of Staal. "He's the ultimate competitor, the ultimate warrior, and for him not to be able to help us try to find a way to win, I know it was crushing to him. Hopefully he's all right. We haven't talked to him. He's a battler and I'm sure he'll be fine."

Staal was on the ice for several minutes before leaving with assistance with 6:07 remaining in the period. He was alert and stable, was taken to the hospital for observation, and released.

"I don't know how he's doing," Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said after the game. "I haven't heard. I know he went to the hospital. We hadn't played without him all year, so it was an adjustment, but I thought Erik Haula came in and played center really well."

Staal had 65 points (28 goals, 37 assists) in 82 games in his first season with Minnesota. He had one assist in the series.

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