PITTSBURGH - Pittsburgh Penguins defenceman Sergei Gonchar was helped off the ice after being levelled by a knee-to-knee hit by Capitals star Alex Ovechkin during the first period of their Eastern Conference semifinals game Friday night.
Gonchar was skating out from behind the Pittsburgh net and Ovechkin, gliding his way during a Washington power play, appeared to stick out his right knee a moment before the two collided.
Gonchar spent about a minute unsuccessfully trying to get up before play was stopped in the Capitals' end.
As Gonchar was assisted off the ice, unable to put any weight on his right leg, Ovechkin was given a two-minute penalty for kneeing.
Earlier in the period, Gonchar scored the first of the Penguins' three consecutive goals in the first on a power play with 3:55 gone, answering Nicklas Backstrom's goal for Washington in the opening minute.