It was a scary scene in the last minute of the first game on Wednesday night between the Jets and the Canadiens.
Jake Evans ran full steam over the ice with 4: 3 for the Canadiens, grabbed a loose puck and scored an empty Netter in 56.9 seconds. Immediately after putting his team in the lead with two goals, however, he was equalized by Mark Scheifele of the Jets with a hard, high and unsuspecting hit.
Evans hit the ice hard and lay on the ground for a while. A number of medical professionals came out, including team doctors from both clubs. The 25-year-old forward – who actually hit the quarter mark on Wednesday – was on the stretcher but gave a thumbs up as he stepped off the ice.
(Warning: this video may be disturbing to some viewers.)
Scheifele received a five-minute major on charges and a ten-minute game offense.
After the game, Canadiens coach Dominique Ducharme said Evans was still at Bell MTS Place and being evaluated. Evans hadn’t been transported to the hospital. Ducharme also called the hit “inutile”, which translated from French means useless.
Evans’ goal in Game 1 was his first goal of the postseason. In 47 games this season he has scored three goals and 13 points. He is now the second player to be banned this postseason when John Tavares of the Maple Leafs was born on Aug.
What happens next is a matter for the NHL’s Player Safety Division. They’ve had some fines and bans lately, including eight games to Avalanche’s Nazem Kadri and two recently to the Golden Knights’ Ryan Reaves.
This is how players and coaches on both sides reacted to the hit:
– Canadiens Center Jesperi Kotkaniemi: “I think it’s disgusting, no respect for the other players out there.”
– Canadian defender Joel Edmundson: “Yes, it was a dirty hit, but the league will take care of it. If he comes back to the series we will make life difficult for him, but I think the league will do a good job of it.” . “
– Perry: “He said nothing. He was just lying there. After what they said he moved, but it was a scary situation. “
– Duchess: “You never want to see a player like that on the ice. We went through that with Tavares in Toronto. He’s not a player in our uniform, but it’s an accident and both sides want him to feel better. Don’t feel that from the other side when it happened. “
– Jets forward Nikolaj Ehlers: “Of course I hope he’s fine. I came back and saw that he didn’t look good. When that happens, there tends to be a crush. So I was just trying to keep everyone away from him, you don’t want anyone to fall on him. I was just trying to keep everyone out. “
– Jets Captain Blake Wheeler: “Just hope he’s okay … that’s the concern. Seeing a guy on the ice for so long is never good, and the stretcher is scary. So let’s just hope he’s fine. “
– Jets trainer Paul Maurice: “Well, hopefully the young man will be fine. It’s such a very unusual game because you check back to kill a game with an empty net. They come at full speed. When Mark stopped skating, he held his arms in there. It’s a heavy, heavy blow. There is no doubt about that. I am sure the league will have its opinion. “