Sabres' Staal leaves game vs. Capitals after hit to head by Dowd

Washington Capitals' Nic Dowd hits Buffalo Sabres forward Eric Staal up high, gets penalty for check to the head. Staal slow to get up and leaves to the dressing room.

Buffalo Sabres forward Eric Staal was forced to leave the team's season opener Thursday after receiving a hit to the head from Washington Capitals forward Nic Dowd.

The play occurred midway in the third period as Dowd caught Staal with a check at centre ice with the head being the principal point of contact. Dowd received a two-minute minor penalty for the play.

Staal was acquired by the Sabres in the off-season from the Minnesota Wild for Marcus Johansson. He had 47 points in 66 games for the Minnesota Wild last season.

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