Oilers forward Connor McDavid was skating along the boards early in the first period Tuesday night in Edmonton when he collided with Blue Jackets defenseman Zachary Werenski.
The bump sent the young superstar sliding into the legs of linesman Steve Barton.
Barton toppled over McDavid and his head hit the ice.
Rogers Place arena grew quiet as the linesman lay motionless.
“Oh boy. That’s hurt right there,” said the analyst on the Sportsnet broadcast. “Watch Steve’s head hit the ice. He can’t protect himself. Bang. That’s a neck and head — that’s ugly right there. You can see right away that he’s in some major league pain.”
The 46-year-old Barton was carried off the ice on a stretcher — giving a thumbs up on the way — and taken to a local hospital.
NHL linesman Steve Barton gives a thumbs up on the stretcher after hitting his head on the ice.pic.twitter.com/3VF0YZPIrM
— Stadium (@Stadium) March 28, 2018
Fans were relieved to hear that the linesman was soon moving all of his extremities.
Word after Oiler loss to Jackets: NHL linesman Steve Barton who hit his head on the ice is still in hospital here and they're still running tests but he's talking to doctors and moving his extremities
— Jim Matheson (@NHLbyMatty) March 28, 2018
Barton spent the night in the hospital as he underwent tests. Thankfully, those came back negative, and he was able to return home Wednesday.
#NHL says linesman Steve Barton, who was stretchered off early in Tuesday’s #CBJ–#LetsGoOilers game, spent the night in an Edmonton hospital. He was feeling much better this morning, has been released and is flying home. #goodnews
— Aaron Portzline (@Aportzline) March 28, 2018
Barton thanked all of those who helped him, including first responders, NHL trainers and hospital staff.
Vaughan Rody worked as the lone linesman for the rest of the game, which Columbus won 7-3. Thomas Vanek had three goals and an assist for the Blue Jackets.
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