WATCH: NHL Star John Tavares Stretchered off Ice After Taking Knee to the Head in Scary Incident

by Joe Rutland

Toronto Maple Leafs team captain John Tavares is recovering from a violent hit to the head by an opponent’s knee in an NHL playoff game.

The play happened in the first period of Thursday night’s Stanley Cup Playoff first-round matchup with the Montreal Canadiens in Toronto. Tavares gets hit by a Canadiens player, falls to the ice, and Corey Perry accidentally hits Tavares with his knee.

Tavares, after Maple Leafs trainers start attending to him, tries getting up but his whole body appeared to be convulsing. This happens after the hit and is not part of the video below. Take a look, though, at the play between the Maple Leafs and Canadiens in Montreal in the NHL.

NHL Player Released From Hospital After Scary Incident On Ice

Maple Leafs players surrounded Tavares as he lay prone on the ice. Medical attendants quickly got a stretcher out on the ice and took him to St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto for observation.

Obviously, once the players lined up again for a faceoff, Perry and Toronto player Nick Foligno immediately dropped their gloves and started fighting.

Perry reportedly said before the fight, according to TSN Montreal, “Nick said, ‘Let’s settle it now. I know it’s an accident. (Tavares) is our captain.”

Initial reports said Tavares suffered a concussion. In addition, he spent Thursday night in the hospital. On Friday, the Maple Leafs released a statement, according to an article from TMZ.

“He was thoroughly examined and assessed by the neurological team at St. Michael’s Hospital and the club’s medical director,” according to the team. “He was kept overnight for observation and is now resting comfortably at home under the care and supervision of team physicians. Tavares will be out indefinitely.”

In 12 seasons as an NHL player, Tavares has 364 goals and 455 assists.

Tavares Updates NHL, Fans About His Status Through Tweet

On Friday, Tavares himself sent out a statement through his Twitter account.

“The support I’ve felt since last night cannot be put into words,” Tavares writes. “I’m thankful to share that I’m back home and recovering. Thank you to my family, friends, teammates, the Maple Leafs organization, Leafs Nation and the hockey community for being by my side.”

Tavares goes on to thank the medical teams and support for their help. He closes by writing, “I look forward to when I can wear the Maple Leaf on my chest again. Until then, I’ll be cheering on the boys along with Leafs Nation as we compete in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.”

Outsider sends its best wishes to Tavares for his continued health improvement.