In the Minnesota Wild's wild win over the Edmonton Oilers last night, Wild captain Mikko Koivu was clipped under the chin by the skate his teammate Dany Heatley and had to leave the game. As his chin oozed, Koivu actually played through it for a little bit before realizing how much of a real bloody mess it could've been:
"Obviously, when I knew it was the skate that hit me and you feel some blood, it was a little bit scary," Koivu said Friday following a UBC practice when asked to recall the third-period sequence that started when Heatley was high-sticked by Shawn Horcoff.
"I didn't know it was that bad. I then thought it was better to go off. It's a serious injury and anything could have happened. "Things happen so fast and you really can't think about it when you play the game. It's just stitches and it will heal. I feel pretty good and obviously a little bit sore."
Had the cut been a little lower, Koivu could have experienced an even scarier incident similar to what happened to Montreal Canadien goalie Clint Malarchuk in 1989. Malarchuk had his internal carotid artery sliced open by a skate and would have bled to death if it weren't for a trainer quickly pinching the artery shut until it was stitched closed.
Koivu's injury isn't nearly as serious, though it could've been. He received 10 stitches and sat out the Wild's practice today in Vancouver, but he is expected to play in tomorrow's game vs. the Canucks.