The heightened level of physical play during the first-round playoff series between the Chicago Blackhawks and St. Louis Blues reached its peak during the third period of Saturday’s game, with each team losing an important player on one play.
Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook delivered a vicious hit on Blues captain David Backes during Game 2 that resulted in a five-minute major and game misconduct for Seabrook. The incident occurred with St. Louis on the power play. The Blues forward was turning the corner behind the Blackhawks net when Seabrook came in and leveled him. Seabrook’s shoulder appeared to make contact with Backes’ head before the captain went crashing hard into the boards.
Backes was slow to get up, and he looked dazed when he finally got to his feet, although he had trouble standing up at all. Trainers escorted Backes off the ice, and the team has not yet provided an update on his status.
St. Louis ended up scoring on the ensuing power play to tie the game 3-3, and they went on to win in overtime 4-3. The Blues now lead the series 2-0.
Although Seabrook has never been suspended by the NHL, the big defenseman will likely face supplemental discipline from the league given the nature of the hit.
Update: Brent Seabrook will have a phone hearing with the NHL about the hit on Backes.
To be clear, when Seabrook's hearing occurs...time still not set...it will be a phone hearing.—
John Shannon (@JSportsnet) April 20, 2014