Watch hockey long enough and you’ll know that an open bench door can create some seriously dangerous situations on the ice, and we got another reminder of that last night during the Stars-Jets game in Dallas.
Late in the third period, Jets forward Blake Wheeler was carrying the puck up the left wing when he was checked by a Stars player. The light check was enough to send Wheeler crashing hard into the Stars bench door, which remained open after the team just completed a line change.
The collision came at a pretty high rate of speed and Wheeler’s chest/shoulder area seemed to take the majority of the impact. After laying crumpled on the ice in obvious pain for a few moments, Wheeler got up under his own power and headed to the Jets locker room. He returned to the game a few shifts later.
Considering the high rate of speed Wheeler was traveling and how little padding there is on the bench door area, it’s amazing (and very fortunate) that this didn’t end a lot worse.