There was some scary news out of the United States Hockey League, the top junior A circuit in the U.S., Saturday night. A game between the Dubuque Fighting Saints and Cedar Rapids RoughRiders was suspended when 18-year-old Dubuque defenseman Dylan Chanter was severely injured following a fight on the ice.
Cedar Rapids had a 2-0 lead midway through the second period when the incident occurred. According to reports, Chanter's helmet came off during his fight.
Jeffrey Johnson of the Cedar Rapids Gazette reported on the incident:
Chanter scrapped with Corey Petrash of the RoughRiders in the corner behind the Dubuque net. The 18-year-old from Armstrong, British Columbia, lost his balance and fell backward, hitting his helmetless head on the ice (dyed pink for a cancer promotion) and dislocating his left shoulder.
The crowd cheered until seeing Chanter begin to severely convulse. His full-body seizure lasted at least two minutes, as team trainers and the RoughRiders' team doctor rushed to him.
He remained on the ice until paramedics arrived on the scene roughly 15 minutes later.
Chanter was conscious and moving when taken from the arena. Dubuque assistant coach Oliver David said the player was in stable condition, with Fighting Saints head coach Matt Shaw with him at the hospital.
From the USHL:
Dubuque Fighting Saints defenseman Dylan Chanter was injured after falling to the ice at the 11:58 mark of the second period during the game, played at the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He was immediately attended to at the arena by medical personnel before being transported to a local hospital for further care. While all parties are awaiting further information, Chanter was conscious as he was transported from the arena.
The Office of the Commissioner and general management of both the Fighting Saints and the RoughRiders concurred that it was in the best interest of the players not to continue the contest.
Fighting is allowed in the USHL, a league that includes players mainly aged 16 through 20, carrying the same five-minute major it does in the NHL. The league is the primary feeder for U.S. college hockey and has had numerous players drafted into the NHL.
This is sure to fire up the fighting debate again, but first and foremost Chanter's health is the most important thing. There was a good sign late Saturday night as the defenseman tweeted:
Wanted to let everyone know I'm awake and okay. Thank you so much for all your thoughts prayers. Nothing compares to the hockey community.— Dylan Chanter (@dylanchanter) October 13, 2013
According to the Dubuque Telegraph Herald, Chanter was released from the hospital Saturday night.
Here's video of the incident which is a bit tough to watch.