CRANBERRY, PA – More than an hour after the Pittsburgh Penguins completed their workout Tuesday afternoon, injured winger Bryan Rust went out on his own and worked with the Penguins coaches.
Wearing a Penguins track suit and ball cap, Rust took a number of reps with coach Mike Sullivan on the ice and didn’t seem to be hindered in terms of speed. He worked out for about 25 minutes and largely did skating and shooting drills. Rust was injured in the third period of Game 1 of the final when he took a hit from Patrick Marleau where there was contact with the head. Rust spent about seven minutes in the Quiet Room, then returned to the ice for one more shift and was hit into the boards by Marc-Edouard Vlasic before leaving the game for good.
Sullivan said during his address to the media before going out with Rust that there was no update and Rust is out day-to-day.
The NHL’s department of player safety elected to not impose any supplemental discipline on Marleau for the hit, something that made sense to Rust’s teammate and Penguins captain Sidney Crosby.
“It looked like there was some contact with his head and I think it was a pretty quick play, too,” Crosby said. “I don’t think (Marleau) really lined up (Rust’s) head and was going for it the whole time. I think Rusty kind of made a last-second move. And Marleau is not really known for being a guy to seek out a hit like that anyway.”
Sullivan did not comment on the league’s decision not to further punish Marleau, saying his team is concentrating on Game 2 and will allow the league to do its job. Whether Bryan Rust is playing in that game is still unclear, but he certainly didn’t show any ill effects on the ice from his brisk workout. His presence would be a welcomed one for the Penguins, since he has goals in three straight games and points in four straight.