Montreal defenceman P.K. Subban was taken off the ice on a stretcher after being hit on the side of the head by a teammate, overshadowing the Canadiens' 3-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday night.
The Canadiens said Subban was taken to a hospital for further testing. They announced Friday that he had been released from Montreal General Hospital with a non-serious neck injury.
Subban thanked fans for their outpouring of support in a tweet on Friday.
Feeling good, and feeling the love. Thanks for all the support!!— @PKSubban1
Subban was injured late in the third period when teammate Alexei Emelin ran into him, knocking him on the side of the head with his back side while retrieving the puck in Montreal's corner. The 2013 Norris Trophy winner was nearly motionless on the ice for about 10 minutes while doctors and trainers tended to him.
"It's scary to see that many trainers and doctors on the ice," said captain Max Pacioretty, who added Subban was communicating with him shortly after the accident. "Nobody knew exactly what happened. That was the scariest part for me. It looked like a nothing play. It was impossible to concentrate after that."
Before the game, Subban was presented the Jean Beliveau Trophy for his community involvement.
"You're trying to win a hockey game but you almost felt like you don't want to keep playing at that point and time," Sabres coach Dan Bylsma said. "The game's an after-thought."
Subban has played 273 consecutive regular-season games — the team's longest active streak. He last missed a game on Jan. 30, 2013. That streak will likely be broken Saturday when Montreal plays Minnesota.
Alex Galchenyuk scored twice for the Canadiens, Torrey Mitchell added a goal, and Mike Condon made 36 saves for his 17th victory of the season, best among rookie goaltenders.
"When you see a guy go down like that, and the stretcher comes out, it takes the life out of you," Mitchell said. "We're just praying that Subby is OK right now."