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Abdelkader injured by illegal hit

by Bill Roose / Detroit Red Wings

Left Wing  - DET
Goals: 3 | Assists: 10 | Pts: 13

Shots: 72 | +/-: 3
DETROIT – Red Wings forward Justin Abdelkader needed assistance to get off the ice late in the first period Saturday after he receive an illegal hit to the head.

Abdelkader was injured by an open-ice hit from Pittsburgh defenseman Deryk Engelland with 29-seconds left in the period. Wings defenseman Kyle Quincey and team trainer Piet Van Zant helped Abdelkader off the ice and into the Wings’ dressing room. He did not return to the game.

Considered by some to be one of the most feared fighters and hardest punchers in the NHL, Engelland received a five-minute match penalty for his hit. According to league Rule 21.1: "A match penalty shall be imposed on any player who deliberately attempts to injure or who deliberately injures an opponent in any manner."

The collision occurred as Abdelkader reached from a loose puck near the Penguins’ bench, Engelland lower his right shoulder and made contact with the left side of Abdelkader’s head.

The Penguins to a 2-1 lead into the first intermission on power-play goals by Sidney Crosby and Engeni Malkin. Abdelkader had the primary assist on Niklas Kronwall's goal that gave the Red Wings the lead at 6:09 of the period.

Follow Bill Roose on Twitter | @Bill_Roose

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