It is meant to happen in the National Hockey League: players get in certain predicaments where they will suffer unimaginable injuries that will put their careers, or even their lives in jeopardy. It seems to happen all the time, and every season, there is one injury that stands out from the other. For the 2017-18 season, there is a clear one for me. And it took place on Saturday night, in a contest between the St. Louis Blues and the Arizona Coyotes.
Don't grab a bite of food at the moment. Pause and finish your meal. Then keep reading this.
Blues veteran forward Scottie Upshall was injured Saturday night in a 6-0 loss to the Arizona Coyotes. St. Louis president of hockey operations and general manager Doug Armstrong provided an update Monday on Upshall’s status, and revealed that the 34-year-old had suffered a lacerated kidney.
Now that sounds wrong, and gross, and gosh oh so painful. On FanRag Sports, Dr. Jesse Morse, a Sports and Family Medicine Physician, explained in detail what might have taken place to cause Upshall to sustain such a life-threatening injury during a contest:
"St. Louis Blues winger Scottie Upshall is out for the season with a lacerated kidney. A lacerated kidney can be a potentially serious injury, depending on the severity of damage. The potential complications range from minor trauma, infection, major laceration causing bleeding into the abdomen, and possible kidney failure. This matter needs to be taken seriously and as a result he will likely undergo serial CT scans of his abdomen to closely monitor. Additionally, he will likely undergo serial blood and kidney testing. It’s plausible he suffered the injury due to a fractured rib, which in turn lacerated the kidney."
The loss of Upshall is yet another blow to the Blues, as they fight for a playoff spot in the Western Conference. St. Louis already is without defenseman Jay Bouwmeester because of a hip injury and spent all season without the services of young winger since he aggravated a knee injury and was ruled out for the whole year before the regular season even started.
The oft-injured Upshall had just seven goals and 12 assists for 19 points in 63 game and was playing in just his second game after missing three weeks with a knee injury.
Many wonder what this means for the veteran's future in the NHL. This is his third straight year where Upshall has been signed to a one-year contract. At 34, he’s inching closer and closer to retirement, and with the Blues getting younger, he might lose his spot, especially with the many injuries not helping his record.
If he’s able to return to the ice and prove his worth at the beginning of the offseason, he may be able to earn his spot back, if not, Upshall's days in the NHL might be coming to an end...