Stars center’s status uncertain for Game 2 after being knocked out by Wild’s Matt Dumba

Dallas Stars center Joe Pavelski was leveled by Minnesota Wild defenseman Matt Dumba during the second period of Monday’s Game 1 and, as a result of the collision, Pavelski ended up leaving the game.

Dumba received a two-minute minor penalty for roughing, but following a lengthy review, he wasn’t given a major penalty for the hit.

Matt Dumba lays a late hit on Joe Pavelski and receives a 2-minute minor penalty for roughing.

— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) April 18, 2023
Immediately after Pavelski fell to the ice, Stars forward Max Domi went after Dumba and threw a few punches. Domi was given a 10-minute misconduct penalty for his retaliation.

“To be honest, I thought it was a clean hit. I figured (the refs) were going to see the same. Shoulder on shoulder,” Dumba said following the game. “I don’t even know why I got the roughing, probably because I was just in the box already.”

Stars head coach Pete DeBoer said after the game that Pavelski’s head hit the ice when he fell.

“We have the best officials in the world. They called a five, they reviewed it, which is the right thing to do. If they reviewed and decided it wasn’t a bad hit then, you know, I guess it’s not for me to argue with that,” DeBoer said. “They got to look at it at multiple different angles and that was the decision they made, so we’ve got to live with that.”

DeBoer added that he wasn’t feeling confident about Pavelski being available to play in Game 2 on Wednesday night.

Pavelski does have a history of concussions throughout his career. In the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Pavelski, who was then a member of the San Jose Sharks, suffered a very physical hit at the hands of Vegas Golden Knights forward Cody Eakin in Game 7 of an opening-round series.

Eakin was assessed a major penalty on that play, and the NHL later determined that it wasn’t the correct call. The Sharks ended up scoring four times on the major penalty and won 5-4 in overtime.

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