Penguins’ David Warsofsky injured after legs taken out by falling referee Tim Peel

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman David Warsofsky suffered a freak injury Sunday when he flipped onto his head and neck after his legs were taken out by referee Tim Peel, who caught an edge and slid into Warsofsky.

Penguins defenseman David Warsofsky was injured Sunday, but it wasn’t a blocked shot, awkward collision or dirty hit that put him out of the game. Warsofsky’s injury occurred after after a collision with referee Tim Peel.

With Carolina breaking up ice, Warsofsky was picking up speed and heading backwards to defend the rush. As the Hurricanes were coming up ice, though, Peel caught an edge, went tumbling to the ice and began sliding in Warsofsky’s direction. Peel’s legs took out an unsuspecting Warsofsky from behind and sent him flipping backwards on to his shoulder, neck and head:

Warsofsky left the contest and did not return, and Penguins coach Mike Sullivan didn’t have an update on the defenseman post-game. Sullivan did say an update could be coming Monday, but, for now, Warsofsky is out with an undisclosed injury and likely won’t be back in the lineup.

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Losing a defenseman is never easy, but it’s even worse for the Penguins, who don’t exactly have what one would call a deep blueline. Pittsburgh GM Jim Rutherford thinned out his defense further this past weekend by trading Adam Clendening to the Anaheim Ducks as part of the acquisition of Carl Hagelin.

The Penguins are already without Kris Letang, and with Warsofsky going down, Pittsburgh recalled 2012 first-round pick Derrick Pouliot from the AHL’s Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Pouliot, 22, played 34 games for Pittsburgh in 2014-15, but hasn’t seem NHL game action this season. He has six goals and 23 points in 37 games in the AHL this season.