CHICAGO – Chicago forward Marian Hossa was wheeled off on a stretcher in the first period of Game 3 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal series with Phoenix on Tuesday, injured by a hit from Phoenix forward Raffi Torres.
The Blackhawks announced after the game that Hossa was recovering at home, having been released from a hospital.
Hossa had just passed the puck at center ice when Torres came out of the Chicago zone and hit Hossa with his left shoulder. Hossa fell to the ice in front of the Blackhawks bench and was motionless for about a minute. He was attended to by the Chicago team doctor, two EMTs and the Hawks' trainer.
He was conscious and talking to the doctor as he left the ice before he was transported by ambulance to Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
The Blackhawks released the following statement after the game from head team physician Dr. Michael Terry:
"Marian Hossa suffered an upper-body blow in the first period of tonight's game. After initial evaluation on the ice he was taken by ambulance to the hospital for further testing, which yielded encouraging results. He has been released from the hospital and we are monitoring him closely at home. We anticipate a full recovery in a timetable yet to be determined."
That was good news to his teammates, who were otherwise livid about the hit and the lack of a penalty to Torres.
"Any time you see a teammate and a good friend, someone you've had some great experiences with, it's tough when you see him laying on the ice like that," defenseman Brent Seabrook said.
Captain Jonathan Toews thought the hit crossed the line, even in comparison to Andrew Shaw's hit on Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith in Game 2. Shaw served the first of a three-game suspension Tuesday night.
"He keeps playing and our guy gets three games for it," Toews said. "It's pretty frustrating when you see that. [Torres] got to stay in the game. It wouldn't surprise me if he tried to do something like that again. So if nothing happens to him, I don't see why he won't try it."
Torres spoke briefly about his role in the play.
"As far as the hit goes, I felt like it was a hockey play," he said. "I was just trying to finish my hit out there."
Asked about coming off his skates as he delivered the check, Torres said, "I'm not going to answer that."
Chicago coach Joel Quenneville called it, "a brutal hit. You could have a multiple-choice question and it's 'All of the above.' I saw exactly what happened. It was right in front of me."