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Rust Update: Penguins Recall Drew O’Connor, Place Rust on IR

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Pittsburgh Penguins, Bryan Rust, Drew O'Connor
Pittsburgh Penguins, Bryan Rust (left), Drew O'Connor (right)

It’s not good news for Pittsburgh Penguins winger Bryan Rust. On Sunday, the Penguins placed their top-line winger on injured reserve retroactive to Friday, Nov. 26.

Rust briefly participated in warmups Friday, but left the ice and did not play in the Penguins 1-0 win over the New York Islanders. Head coach Mike Sullivan said Rust was injured in warmups and suffered a lower-body injury. On Saturday, Sullivan was unable to say if Rust would travel with the team on the coming road trip.

It is Rust’s second lower-body injury this season.

In response, the Pittsburgh Penguins recalled forward Drew O’Connor. In 12 NHL games this season, O’Connor has five points (3-2-5) and was a plus-2. He was assigned to the WBS Penguins as Rust and others returned to the Penguins lineup.

In five AHL games, O’Connor also has five points (3-2-5). The 6-foot-3, 200-pound forward has played in 22 career NHL games and has six points (3-3-6). He has 24 points (10-14-24) in 25 career AHL games. He was signed as an undrafted college free agent in March 2020.

Rust is in the final year of his four-year, $14 million contract which carries a $3.5 million AAV. Last season, he scored 42 points (22-20-42) in 56 games. He also had three points (2-1-3) in six playoff games.

Players on IR may not play for at least seven days, so the earliest Rust can return to the Penguins lineup is Saturday, Dec. 4 in Vancouver. The Pittsburgh Penguins begin their five-game road trip through western Canada on Monday in Calgary.

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Pittsburgh Hockey Now Editor-in-Chief, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight, NHL Home Ice. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.

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Frank
Frank
8 months ago

Am I the only one that looks for three things after a game. First the game result, second who is going to the IR; third is anyone close to coming off the IR. The safest job in Pittsburgh has to be the team medical staff.

Robert Shoemaker
Robert Shoemaker
8 months ago
Reply to  Frank

They went a few games without that issue and were winning. That was nice…and brief.

Kris
Kris
8 months ago
Reply to  Frank

Yeah and what sucks is he got hurt in warm-ups or sometime before that.

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