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Lyubushkin suffers head injury on hit from Rempe

Mark Blinch / National Hockey League / Getty

Newly acquired Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin suffered a head injury Satruday after taking a hard hit from New York Rangers enforcer Matt Rempe, head coach Sheldon Keefe said postgame.

The hit occurred toward the end of the second period in the Leafs' 4-3 shootout win. Lyubushkin didn't return to the game.

Keefe wasn't overly pleased with the hit.

"Comes a long way, leaves his feet, hits him in the head, injury," the Leafs coach said, shrugging his shoulders.

As many expected pregame, Rempe dropped the gloves with Leafs heavyweight Ryan Reaves later in the contest.

The 6-foot-7, 241-pound Rempe has quickly made a name for himself in his brief NHL tenure. The scrap against Reaves was already his fourth fight in his seven-game NHL career. The 21-year-old has racked up 37 penalty minutes in that time.

Lyubushkin was making his first appearance since reuniting with the Leafs via trade from the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday. The 29-year-old defenseman played 31 regular-season games and seven more playoff contests with Toronto in 2021-22.

The Maple Leafs are already without Mark Giordano on the back end, who suffered a head injury Thursday. William Lagesson will likely be the next man up if Lyubushkin is forced to miss extended time.

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