ANAHEIM, California – St. Louis Blues defender Jay Bouwmeester stayed in the hospital and was tested on Wednesday a day after a heart condition and bench breakdown during a game in Anaheim.
General manager Doug Armstrong said the 36-year-old Bouwmeester had stopped responding after a bank breakdown on Tuesday evening. A defibrillator was used and he became conscious immediately before being taken to an Anaheim hospital.
“He is doing very well and is currently going through a series of tests. Things look very positive, ”said Armstrong during a press conference in Las Vegas.
Teammates Vince Dunn and Alex Pietrangelo immediately called for help after Bouwmeester crashed 7:50 in the first half. Paramedics hurried to the blues bank. After a few minutes, Bouwmeester was taken out on a stretcher through a tunnel under the stands when the players stood on the ice in shocked silence. The game was postponed.
Pietrangelo said he visited Bouwmeester in the hospital on Tuesday evening and the rest of the team saw him through FaceTime. The team stayed in Southern California before taking a charter flight to Las Vegas, where they will play against the Golden Knights on Thursday.
“It was important for us to see him. Everyone felt much better when he was in a good mood, ”said Pietrangelo.
The last player to collapse on an NHL bank before Bouwmeester was Dallas striker Rich Peverley in 2014. Peverley had an irregular heartbeat and the quick response from the emergency officials made sure he was fine. Detroit Jiri Fischer had a similar episode in 2005.
The NHL has had standards for dealing with potential life-threatening heart problems for several seasons. This includes having a team doctor within 50 feet of the bank. An orthopedist and two other doctors are also nearby.
Defibrillators must also be in the vicinity. The home team has one on their bench and the away team cannot be farther away than their changing room. Every medical team regularly tests the evacuation of a seriously injured player before the season and all players are examined for serious heart disease.
"The incidents with Peverley and Fischer, and now Bouwmeester, have all reminded us of the importance of making team doctors near the casinos and defibrillators easily accessible at short notice," said Ken Holland, general manager of Edmonton Oilers, who joined Fischer in 2005 had collapsed on the bench. "It probably saved her whole life. Incredible work from league and team medical professionals. "
Bouwmeester is in its 17th NHL season and his fitness and condition have always been a source of pride. He helped the blues to win the Stanley Cup last season and won an Olympic gold medal with Canada in 2014.
Bouwmeester ran this season in his 57th game and the 1,241. his NHL career ice cream. He had driven 1:20 in his last shift before collapsing and recorded 5:34 ice age when the game started.
“His training and the way he takes care of himself shows how things can change quickly. It is a testament to the NHL and the teams that everyone is positioned when this happens, ”said Armstrong.
Bouwmeester's father was at the game as part of the team's annual father trip and accompanied his son to the hospital.
The blues and ducks talk to the league about the game's composition. Armstrong said a full 60 minutes will be played and the game will continue with a tie.