Canucks' Larsen leaves on stretcher after huge hit by Hall
Vancouver defenceman appears unconscious as players rush in for skirmish
Vancouver Canucks defenceman Philip Larsen left Tuesday's game against the New Jersey Devils on a stretcher after Taylor Hall knocked him out cold in the second period.
Hall's check caused Larsen to fall backwards onto the ice, where he appeared to remain unconscious as players around him responded to the hit.
The Canucks said he was alert and had a full range of motion leaving the ice.
"I'm looking to make contact there, but I never want to see a guy laying on the ice like that," Hall said. "I only know how to play the game one way and you've got to play it hard. I feel terrible. He's a former teammate of mine. I would have loved to make a hit there and continue the play. I hope he's all right."
The incident was made worse as both teams rushed in to defend Larsen and Hall. Goalie Jacob Markstrom and centre Markus Granlund shielded Larsen from the subsequent melee.
If Granlund & Markstrom hadn't protected Larsen, this could've been A LOT worse than it already is <a href="https://t.co/O1YrNTmZTB">pic.twitter.com/O1YrNTmZTB</a>—@vanessajang
Unfortunately, several players could be seen accidentally kicking Larsen in the head.
See Sbisa come in and kick Larsen in the head. Then everyone fights around an unconscious Larsen. <br> <a href="https://t.co/MgU9GpAB0Y">pic.twitter.com/MgU9GpAB0Y</a>—@AzorcanGlobal
Canucks don't like the hit on Larsen so they all kick him in the head on their way to scrum with Hall.—@dr_w83
Even more sickening than the Hall hit on Larsen is watching all the idiots kick him in the head during the scrum. USE YOUR HUMAN BRAIN 😔—@jessicalaurissa
No penalty was called on the play.
Vancouver coach Willie Desjardins had no update on Larsen's condition, and he did not know if the 27-year old would remain in the hospital overnight.
"You always have a problem with a hit when one of your guys gets hit hard," Desjardins said. "It doesn't even matter if it's a clean hit. You still have a problem when a guy gets hit that hard."
Hall felt he was doing his job.
"It makes me feel a little bit better that everyone was saying it was a clean hit and the referees agreed," Hall said. "In that sense, I don't have any regrets with what I did. I try to keep all my extremities in close, and I just wanted to make contact chest to chest. Sometimes it doesn't work out like that."
Hall ended the game with a goal and an assist as New Jersey edged Vancouver 3-2.
With files from the Associated Press
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