MONTREAL, Quebec (AP)Flames defenseman Chris Tanev was helped off the ice after taking a slap shot to the head in the second period of Calgary’s 2-1 shootout loss to the Montreal Canadiens on Monday.
During a 5-on-3 penalty kill, Tanev attempted to block a slap shot from Canadiens captain Nick Suzuki. The shot hit Tanev in the side of his head. He fell on the ice as the Bell Centre crowd fell silent.
”It’s tough, I mean, he doesn’t stay down very often,” said Calgary goaltender Jacob Markstrom. ”So when he stays down you’re worried. I haven’t talked to him after, but hopefully he’s O.K.”
Although Montreal still possessed the puck, Canadiens right-winger Joel Armia asked the referees to whistle the play dead so Tanev could get medical assistance.
After team medics examined Tanev, he skated off the ice with help from his teammates. Before the injury, Tanev had 11:43 of ice time with one shot on net.
”I just talked to Tanev. I know the feeling and I know the sound,” said Calgary head coach Daryl Sutter. ”I told the players, the toughest guy in the building is Chris Tanev, let’s go do it for him.”
The Flames were left with five defensemen for the remainder of the game.
The 32-year-old Tanev has five assists, four penalty minutes, and a minus-1 rating over 23 games for Calgary this season.