BLADES OF FEAR
Last night in Buffalo Richard Zednik had his neck sliced open by an errant skate blade.
The horrifying injury conjured up memories of Sabres goaltender Clint Malarchuk who suffered a similar gash decades ago. Who can forget the sight of blood pulsing from his neck as he desperately tried to suppress it with hand pressure as he skated briskly to the players bench (picture - NOT for the squeamish). He was to be ok, but doctors said the main reason he survived was his own quick and instinctive reaction to the injury.
|Crowd reacts to Zednik injury
Zednik was last listed in stable condition in a Buffalo hospital.
I never experienced anything that life threatening but I did have a finger sliced half-off by a skate blade during a game in the AHL.
During an attempted pokecheck the oncoming player skated/stepped on my right hand and pointer-finger. As I regained my feet I felt a warm and stinging sensation in hand. When I looked down at the ice there was a dotted trail of blood all over my crease. I looked at my blocker glove and it was saturated in blood. My friend Jim Playfair had the puck behind my net and I yelled at him to freeze it or stop play somehow. He must have shot the puck 30 rows up into the stands. Our trainer made his way to my crease (I don't know why I didn't just skate to the bench) and slowly removed the glove. I feared that not all of my fingers would show up. My hand was completely bloodied. He asked me to make a fist and I did, then he instructed me to open it. As I opened my fist the finger just dangled (lovely sight) -- end of night (and season) for Razor.
A very fine micro-surgeon, specializing in hands, succored the finger/tendon back together and put a pin through it.
Today it's a little fatter than the other fingers but it works fine. (It's my tele-strator finger)
You might remember, last season Stars captain Brenden Morrow dealt with a similar skate-inflicted injury.
We were in Chicago right after Christmas and Radim Vrbata of the Hawks attempted to jump over a prone Morrow during the game. As he did his skate blade sliced across his wrist. Morrow leapt to his feet and bolted for the Stars dressing room in excruciating pain. The pain was so bad he reportedly bit clean through his jersey.
The injury was repaired, and over the half season he spent on IR the wrist healed, but when he returned to play he was forced to deal with a sort of "skate-phobia".
He admitted to fearing blades at times in games and it even disrupted his sleep patterns.
Thankfully he says he's over it now, but in the last months of the 06-07 season it was occupying his thoughts and dreams.
I'm always amazed that these type of injuries aren't more commonplace considering the speed that things happen on the ice, the out of control nature of collisions on a slippery surface, and the razorblade sharpness of today's players skates.
Lets hope that trend does continue.
Posted on February 11, 2008 10:48 AM Email Razor
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