The National Hockey League saw two players this week be critically injured. The first was Ilya Mikheyev from the Toronto Maple Leaf’s, who suffered a severe cut that saw him going into immediate surgery. This involved repairing the tendons and arteries in his right wrist, which became severed on December 27th. He was sliced by Jesper Bratt’s skate when it landed on his right wrist. Without any hesitation, Ilya removed his cloves and covered the wound. He immediately moved towards the benches without the approval of referees or coaching staff.
The Maple Leaf’s forward was quickly transported to the Newark University Hospital, where he has remained since Friday for additional monitoring. It’s anticipated that he will be returned to Leaf’s coaching staff in the coming days, where Ilya will be transported to his home. It’s not expected that he will play for months to come, with team officials confirming that the timeline is roughly three months from now.
Sheldon Keefe, the latest head coach for the Toronto Maple Leaf’s, was shocked to see this event playout on ice. Taking account of everything happening on the rink, he didn’t notice the horrific event. All Keefe noticed was his skating off the ice without a glove, then the slightest trickle of blood. However, Michael Hutchinson saw the entire injury take place. The Head Goalie was quoted with saying the event was terrifying. Hutchinson continued by noting that there was significant pushing for the corner puck, then blood poured from his wrist unexpectedly onto the ice.
Two Others Sliced
Ilya Mikheyev isn’t the first player this season who has acquired a significant cut on their wrist during playtime. Cal Clutterbuck from the New York Islanders saw a similar injury take place on December 19th, needing his tendons repaired from slicing to the wrist. Days before this event, Robert Thomas saw himself being on the receiving end of significant injury. This comes after his second professional season in the National Hockey League, with his tendons needing upwards of eight months to heal. This significant injury could mark the end of his professional career.
These injuries show the significant ferocity of professional hockey, which is infamous for acquiring concussions. However, with the sport becoming more fast-paced in recent years, these slicing injuries have become more common. For the safety of professional players, NHL officials must enforce new policies that will lower the percentage of these injuries.