Jacob Trouba’s goal against Sidney Crosby gives New York a 5-3 win over the Penguins

Jacob Trouba’s goal against Sidney Crosby gives New York a 5-3 win over the Penguins

Crosby took to the ice after the crunching check, which came immediately after collecting a loose puck in Rangers’ defensive end. Crosby quickly got to his feet and tried to continue playing. But he couldn’t. He went to the bench and sat down, bowed his head and then went into the dressing room with about seven minutes left.

Shortly after, Rangers unleashed a barrage of goals in a row from Adam Fox, Alexis Lafrenière and Trouba, who danced from the point to a nifty backhand goal that insulted Crosby’s injury even more.

One of the most accomplished players of the last 20 years, Crosby has won three Stanley Cups, two Hart trophies as the league’s most valuable player, and two Conn Smythe trophies as the playoff’s most valuable player with the Penguins.

But he also has a history of head injuries, the most serious of which occurred in 2011. For many skeptical New York fans, he also has a history of failing in a perceived attempt to take a penalty. But in this case, Crosby didn’t even ask the referees for a call.

No penalty was imposed for the game, but the National Hockey League’s Player Safety Bureau could look into it and fine, if not suspend, Trouba on Thursday. From Pittsburgh’s perspective, it would be up to the league to keep their best and most skilled players on the ice.

In the first four games of the series, Crosby had two goals and seven assists.

But not all penguins were convinced the piece was dirty. Marcus Pettersson was also asked if he thought Trouba acted with intent to harm.

“Honestly, I didn’t see it,” he said. “But I do not believe that. Both teams play hard.”

The severe blow was imposed a game after Rangers coach Gerard Gallant punished his team for being “soft” in Game 4 in Pittsburgh, a game the Penguins easily won. Gallant didn’t ask hit players to take cheap shots, but to compete harder, fight for pucks along the boards, and show more dedication on defense. They did all that.

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