The Vancouver Canucks couldn’t wait for the season to end. Unfortunately for them, the final game of 2013-14 had one more injury to inflict on the club.
Forward Daniel Sedin was taken off the ice on a stretcher after a hit from behind by Calgary’s Paul Byron. The Flames forward was given a five-minute major for boarding and a game misconduct by referees Rob Martell (#26) and Steve Kozari (#40).
With both the Canucks and Flames packed up and sent home for the year, any supplemental discipline would be tacked on to the start of the 2014-15 season.
On the bright side, it looked like Sedin’s injury wasn’t as devastating as it appeared.
“I believe Daniel is okay. I’m not going to comment on the hit. No sense.” – Torts
— Vancouver Canucks (@VanCanucks) April 14, 2014
“I believe he’s okay. He did go to the hospital, [as a] precautionary [measure], and the last report I got is he is okay,” Canucks coach John Tortorella said. “You’re concerned about the guy. I’m glad he’s okay. When I saw him first go down, it scared me a little bit. That’s the most important thing, it’s not about the damn game, it’s about the kid, but we’ve gotten really good reports.”
The Canucks went on to say that Sedin was taken “in stable condition to Vancouver General Hospital to undergo further evaluation and imaging. He exhibited signs of movement to his extremities and showed improvement from initially being hit. No assessment will be made until completion of this evaluation.”
Byron spoke after the game about his season-ending hit on Sedin.
“I just saw the puck in the corner. I was trying to finish my check. I saw the replay again. I didn’t think it was a dirty hit. It wasn’t my intention. I just hope he’s okay. The game is so fast. You have split seconds to make decisions. When you see a guy laying on the ice it’s really scary. You never want to see that.” – Paul Byron
Sedin spoke to the media on Monday, thankful that he avoided serious injury on the play. “I hit my head on the glass,” said Sedin, “I tried to lift my head, but couldn’t get it off the ice. I thought: lay still. I was scared. I felt something wasn’t right. It feels okay today.”
According to TSN, Byron reached out to Sedin following the game to apologize.
"It wasn't my intention. I just hope he's okay. You never want to see that happen to a guy on the ice." – Byron on D. Sedin #CGYVAN
— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) April 14, 2014
Though scary, it looked like the play was nothing more than a shove resulting in an awkward crash into the boards. Stephane Quintal and the Department of Player Safety must agree, as they’ve chosen not to levy any further discipline.
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