Max Pacioretty Hits the Boards
Over 6’5, Zdeno Chara is a real big guy. He is considered one of the tallest NHL players in history. This translates to when he hits you, you feel it. A controversial play that took place in 2011, Max Pacioretty was on the receiving end of a hit by Chara.
As the two went for the puck, Chara hit Pacioretty sending him into the edge of the boards between the benches, clotheslining him. Pacioretty was out cold before he hit the ice. He wasn’t moving even as emergency medics came on the ice to his aid. The looks on the faces of the fans say it all.
When it was all over, Pacioretty had a neck fracture and a concussion. He did play hockey again.
Chara wasn’t suspended for what many felt was an intentionally hazardous hit. The boards were permanently changed to guarantee nothing like this occurred again.
Richard Zednik Catches a Skate to the Neck
During this routine play, Richard Zednik of the Florida Panthers goes into the boards, falls, and then races to the bench bleeding abundantly. What happened? As one of his teammates fell, his skate blade sliced Zednik’s carotid artery. Zednik survived the injury and was back playing hockey in a few weeks.
Bill Masterton Dies
You may know the NHL has a Bill Masterton trophy, but you might not know about the man behind the award. Bill Masterton played as a Minnesota North Star in the 60’s and things were going well until January 15, 1968, when he took a bad hit and fell hard. He hit the back of his head on the ice and since players didn’t wear helmets then, he lost consciousness right away. A day after the hit, Bill Masterton died from his injuries.
He is the only NHL player to have died from an on-ice hockey injury.