Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk was rushed off of the ice during his team's game against the Canadiens on Tuesday after he took the blade of an opponent's skate to the face near his eye and nose. Canadiens winger Artturi Lehkonen appeared to stumble and fall to the ground, which caused his right leg to pop up. Boychuk was right behind Lehkonen and the skate made serious contact with his face.
After briefly writhing in pain and immediately grabbing his face, Boychuk quickly got up and rushed off the ice in a panic. The replays only seem to amplify the severity of the injury.
On Wednesday, Islanders president and general manager Lou Lamoriello gave an update on Boychuk's condition.
"Johnny Boychuk is okay," Lamoriello said. "Fortunately the skate blade just got the eyelid. It took 90 stitches for a plastic surgeon to fix. But he'll be fine."
Just a bit later, it was Boychuk who was able to give some good news to fans of his, and the Islanders.
Thank you to everyone for the positive messages and thoughts! I am extremely grateful. Please know they did not go unheard. Luckily for me the skate only cut my eyelid. Sorry for the late response...facial recognition wasn’t working... thank you again my friends. Johnny B— Johnny Boychuk (@joboych) March 4, 2020
The Islanders would go on to lose their game to Montreal, 6-2.
Back in February, there were two incidents of NHL players suffering skate-related injuries, one of them from a teammate of Boychuk. Islanders forward Casey Cizikas got cut on his leg with a skate against the Flyers. Cizikas was ruled out 3-4 weeks with a leg laceration. The other injury happened to Detroit Red Wings forward Brendan Perlini who took a skate to the right side to his face.
The 13-year veteran has played 63 games for the Islanders this year and scored 11 points.