Joe Pavelski
Photo courtesy of @theScoreNHL (Twitter)

Dallas Stars veteran Joe Pavelski exited Game 1 of the team’s first-round Stanley Cup Playoffs matchup with the Minnesota Wild early Monday evening after a controversial hit from Matthew Dumba, which caused absolute raucous.

Around the midway mark of the second period when Pavelski was on the forecheck, Dumba proceeded to blindside him with a massive hit that saw the forward go flying. Pavelski immediately hit the ice in considerable pain and had to be helped off.

Take a look:

As you can see, the Stars were not happy. Pavelski even hit his head on the ice, which is always concerning.  Dumba was initially given a five-minute major before it was downgraded to a two-minute minor. Max Domi, who skated in and went after Dumba, was handed a 10-minute misconduct and a roughing minor.

Joe Pavelski has been a key piece of this Dallas team all season long. The 38-year-old played all 82 games, scoring 28 goals and supplying 49 assists for a total of 77 points. Before departing, Pavelski had an assist in just over 10 minutes of ice time.

There is no question the Stars will need Pavelski healthy if they’re going to make a deep playoff run in the coming weeks. There are currently no updates on what type of injury he’s dealing with, but it certainly doesn’t look good.

Game 2 is scheduled for Wednesday. We’ll likely have a better idea of where Pavelski is at either after Game 1 or on Tuesday. As of writing, the Stars and Wild are in a 2-2 deadlock late in the third period.