Canucks defenseman Alexander Edler got tangled up while retreating in front of his team’s goal early in the third period of Monday night’s game against the Flyers, and faceplanted with extreme violence. A player spiking his face into the ice isn’t generally one of the many things a viewer expects to cringe at while watching a hockey game. This was horrible, and featured lots of blood.
It looks in the replay like Edler’s stick gets hung up in the skate of Flyers winger Jake Voráček, and the momentum of Voráček then pulls Edler into an awkward, off-balance twist that ends with Edler’s face just pounding into the ice. Elder was down on the ice for several minutes, and was eventually stretchered off. The sequence reportedly included a delay in the action while an arena crew worked to clean up a puddle of blood from the ice. Edler did not return to the action, but was reportedly able to walk out of the trainer’s room under his own power, and was spotted leaving the arena in street clothes.