Sports Outside the Beltway

A year later- Florida and Richard Zednik defeat Toronto 5-4

Florida who was behind 4-1 at one point last night, came back to tie the game and then win it in regulation. Richard Zednik scored the last two goals of the game.

This is noteworthy because of what happened a year ago yesterday-

Richard Zednik sustained a major gash in his neck when the right skate of Panthers’ teammate Olli Jokinen with his back to Zednik caught him with 9:56 left in Sunday’s game at Buffalo and the Sabres leading 4-3. The game was suspended temporarily.

Sabres’ doctors stopped the bleeding and Zednik was transported to Buffalo General Hospital in “stable condition,” said Panthers team spokesman Justin Copertino. Sabres’ team doctor William Hartrich and Dr. Les Biffon worked on Zednick to stop the bleeding.

Blood poured out of Zednik’s neck as he skated to the Panthers’ bench and was quickly escorted off the ice with a white towel on his neck. A trail of blood remained from the goal line in the Sabres’ zone all the way to the Panthers’ bench.

Jokinen was tangled with Buffalo’s Clarke Macarthur near the boards and while falling down kicked his skate up into the air. It sliced his linemate’s neck.

Zednik was quite fortunate to survive the type of incident he did. Now he’s trying to help the Florida Panthers make the playoffs for the first time in nine years.

As it stands Florida is in 8th place or the last playoff slot in the Eastern Conference. Which is deceiving because they have played one less game than the 5th place Montreal Canadians and only trail them by five points. I really think Florida will make the playoffs this year and Richard Zednik will be a key reason why.

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