Hockey's 15 Nastiest Shot-Blocking Injuries Caught on Tape
NHL hockey is a physical game that has seen a dramatic shift over the past few years that involves teams focusing on blocking shots.
Throughout the course of the season, many players are caught in a vulnerable area while attempting to block a shot, and they suffer serious injuries.
Some of these injuries are just nasty, and scary to watch at the same time. If you have a weak stomach, proceed with caution, because here are hockey's 15 nastiest shot-blocking injuries caught on tape.
Ian Laperriere was a hard-nosed player who played the game hard, and moments like this are terrible.
Laperriere took a hard slapshot to his face while attempting to block a shot, and he started to bleed profusely.
Laperriere would leave the game immediately, and he would never be the same again.
This injury would eventually force Laperriere to retire because he would experience post concussion-like symptoms.
Jack Hillen Takes a Slapper off the Face
With the power of your average NHLer, it is often a scary sight to witness a shot striking a player in the face.
The Washington Capitals were on the power play when Jack Hillen got caught in the wrong place at the wrong time in front of Alexander Ovechkin's slap shot.
Hillen was floored by the velocity of Ovechkin's booming slapper, and he earned a lot of respect after getting up from this hellacious shot block.
Trent McCleary's Career-Ending Shot Block
During a game against the Philadelphia Flyers, Montreal Canadiens player Trent McCleary dropped down to block a shot.
As a result, the puck hit McCleary directly in the throat, crushing his windpipe.
When he was carried off the ice, he lost consciousness and was rushed to a hospital where he was put on oxygen.
Unfortunately, this was the last game of McCleary's career.
Sami Salo Is a Warrior
Sami Salo deserves a badge of honor after putting his life and livelihood on the line by blocking this shot in the nether regions.
Salo was wearing an athletic supporter but still winces in shock and horror after taking this shot.
He truly has balls of steel, and he earned the respect of his fellow man throughout the world after taking this shot like a champ.
Luck Is a Cruel Mistress
It is bad enough to block a shot using the nether regions—it is even worse when the deflection comes back to bite you.
Patrick Thoreson of the Philadelphia Flyers took a shot down where no man should ever have to, and Mike Green ultimately would get the puck back to score a game-tying goal.
This moment really hurts and is not easy to watch, especially if you are a guy.
Sami Lepisto Blocks a Big Slapper
Sami Lepisto is a tough player, but this nasty shot block causes the Chicago Blackhawks member to wince in immense pain.
You can see the pain and suffering in his body language as he leans over the bench waiting to receive medical attention.
Ryan Callahan Breaks Leg Blocking a Zdeno Chara Slapper
Ryan Callahan is a player who is always one of the NHL's top shot-blockers, and sometimes it comes back to bite him.
The current New York Rangers captain had his season ended when he blocked a slap shot taken by Zdeno Chara.
Callahan would skate off the ice in pain, and it was later revealed that he had suffered a broken leg.
Josh Gorges Knocked out Cold
This video is very tough to watch because of the severity of the injury suffered on the play.
Josh Gorges is a defenseman who sacrifices his body night in and night out, but on this night, he was knocked out cold after taking a slap shot to the head.
As soon as the shot is blocked, Gorges goes out like a light, and there was some cause for concern as the Montreal defender laid almost lifeless on the ice.
Alex Burrows Sent to the Locker Room After Taking Puck to the Face
Don't be fooled by Alex Burrows' quickness as he leaves the ice, because he was in some serious pain after taking a heavy slap shot to the face.
After blocking the shot, Burrows momentarily writhes in pain before his adrenaline kicked in.
He was sent to the dressing room, and it was a while before the forward returned to the ice because of the injury he suffered on the play.
James Wisniewski Blocks Shot with His Face
James Wisniewski is very fortunate he wears a visor, because he could have been injured a lot worse if his entire face was exposed.
While Wisniewski was attempting to stop a scoring chance, he inadvertently blocked a shot with his face.
When the Montreal defender finally was helped off the ice, he was wearing a crimson mask of blood that dripped as he left the ice.
Kevin Shattenkirk Takes a Slap Shot off His Face
Kevin Shattenkirk is a player who sacrifices a lot for his team, and he really goes all-in with this heroic shot block.
Shattenkirk was attempting to do his job by preventing a goal, but he ultimately paid a steep price to do his job.
However, he earned a lot of respect from his teammates and opponents after truly putting his body on the line.
Mike Mottau Nailed with a Stinger to the Face
Mike Mottau immediately knew what happened once he took a heavy piece of vulcanized rubber off the face.
He dropped to the ice and was rolling in pain, and then the blood really started to flow as the team's medical staff made a quick rush to the ice.
It is moments like these that make you wonder why players decide not to wear a visor.
Steven Stamkos Proves He Is One of the League's Toughest Players
Steven Stamkos is the NHL's best sniper and goal scorer, but he earned a lot of respect for his toughness during this playoff game.
Stamkos inadvertently blocked a rising slap shot taken by Johnny Boychuk that broke his nose.
It was only a matter of minutes before Stamkos was patched up and back on the ice with a cage on his helmet to protect his face from further damage.
After watching this clip, it makes you realize how tough hockey players are.
Daniel Paille's Gruesome Shot Block
Steve Staios had one of the NHL's hardest slap shots during his career, and Daniel Paille experienced that firsthand during this clip.
The Boston Bruins forward was hit with a similar shot that had injured Steven Stamkos in the previous year's playoffs.
Although the injury was downright nasty, Paille walked off the ice under his own power like the rugged and tough forward he is.
Patrik Elias Does Some Serious Damage on Phillipe Boucher
Watching this moment live was one of the scariest injuries I can recall viewing during my relatively young career in watching hockey.
Patrik Elias unleashed a rocket from the side of the net, and the puck hit Philippe Boucher directly in the eye socket.
As a result, Boucher left the game, and it was determined that his eye socket was broken from the force of the puck after he was examined by team doctors.