ST. PAUL, Minn. – Minnesota Wild right-wing Mark Parrish left Wednesday night’s playoff opener against Colorado with a head injury following an awkward run-in with Ruslan Salei in the second period.
As a loose puck trickled toward the Wild bench, Parrish and Salei gave chase, with a minor collision before Parrish hit the boards hard. He crumpled to the ice and remained there for nearly 10 minutes, with a hush falling over the crowd concerned for the Bloomington native.
Parrish was eventually helped off the ice by team trainers while his teammates tussled with Salei behind the net.
He was taken to the hospital for tests, which he passed, and released, the team said. He will be re-evaluated Thursday.
It was a rough way to go out for Parrish, who wasn’t even sure he would play Wednesday night after being a healthy scratch four times in March. He fell out of favour with coach Jacques Lemaire earlier in the season because of a perceived lack of effort in practice and in games, but had recently earned the trust back.
“He had a time there where he was not skating, not good in practice,” Lemaire said earlier this week. “Now I can see that he’s working. That’s what you got to do. When things are not going well, it’s OK, you can blame the coach, but you still got to play. Blame me, but keep playing.”