A freak injury to Winnipeg Jets forward Mason Appleton has driven a change in every NHL arena.
Appleton was injured when he was hit into the glass by Seattle Kraken defenseman Carson Soucy. The Jets forward’s stick got caught in a hole in the glass, twisting his arm and, ultimately, breaking his wrist.
Mason Appleton gets clotheslined by his own stick and Soucy will go for interference. That’s a tough one. pic.twitter.com/hMjyEtOEl2
— Emerald City Hockey (@EmeraldCityHky) November 14, 2022
Referees use the hole to speak to the off-ice officials regarding penalty calls and the time on the clock.
The Winnipeg winger required surgery, along with a nearly three-month recovery. Work was also done to each of the NHL’s 32 buildings to close that hole.
It appears the NHL has implemented a solution to plug the hole, similar to what is already done to close photographers’ holes around the corners of the rink.
Appleton is glad to be back, and equally happy that no one else will suffer the same fate.
“[It was] fluky, freaky, all the above. Just glad they fixed [the holes in the glass] and changed it in all the rinks now, so that can’t happen again, which is nice to see,” said Appleton, via NHL.com. “Weird accident and hopefully nothing like that happens to anybody else going forward.”
Thanks to a quick change from the league, it won’t.