The governing body for amateur hockey in eastern Ontario says a youth hockey player was saved by a neck guard after being cut by a skate at a hockey game this week.
The officiating program for Hockey Eastern Ontario posted to social media on Nov. 15 that a player was cut by a skate in the neck at a U16AAA game on Tuesday.
“Luckily, he was wearing a neck guard or this could have been much worse,” the tweet by the HEO officiating program said.
“This can happen any night in any rink. Protective equipment matters for everyone.”
A photo posted to social media appeared to show the player with stitches being applied to his neck following the injury.
The death of former Pittsburgh Penguins player Adam Johnson in England has reignited conversations around neck guards in the NHL.
Johnson died after a skate blade cut his neck in a game last week. In response, the English Ice Hockey Association will require all players in England to wear neck guards starting Jan. 1, 2024.
The Western Hockey League has also mandated neck guards. A neck guard mandate is already in place for the Ontario Hockey League and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
There is no mandate for the protective equipment in the National Hockey League (NHL).
Ottawa Senators forwards Claude Giroux and Josh Norris were seen voluntarily wearing black neck guards during a game against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Nov. 4.
The Senators have encountered injuries related to skate cuts before. In 2013, Erik Karlsson was slashed by a skate blade that serious damaged his Achilles tendon, requiring surgery.