Danick Martel of the Flyers’ AHL-affiliate, the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, is having nothing short of a career year. He’s third on the team with 26 points in 36 games and sits just two goals back of the league lead with 17. He’s managed to put up impressive numbers despite missing some time after joining the Flyers for a short stint earlier this year. He impressed in his first shot in the NHL and many fans would’ve liked to see him spend a bit more time with the team.
Despite his recent success, his standout season was put on hold Saturday night due to a blind-side hit he received from Hershey Bears’ player Colby Williams. The 22-year-old defenseman leveled Martel in open ice and made significant contact with his head. He was assessed a 10-minute match penalty and was immediately ejected from the game. Here’s a look at the hit:
Different angle on Colby Williams hit on Danick Martel. It's ugly no matter what angle you look at it from. Yikes. pic.twitter.com/CulFQjg3Pd
— Tony Androckitis* (@TonyAndrock) January 14, 2018
Both Martel and Williams missed the Bears and Phantoms matchup the following night. Details on the specifics of Martel’s injury have been hard to come by but, according to Phantoms coach Scott Gordon, he underwent surgery Sunday morning for injuries sustained by the hit. No further details were provided but it’s reasonable to believe he may have a concussion and possibly a fractured jaw (nothing is confirmed at the time of this writing, though).
In regards to Williams and any further disciplinary action, he was forced to miss Sunday’s contest as the league hasn’t finished reviewing the hit to this point. He is “suspended” until they come to a final decision which could come as early as later today.
Colby Williams isn't going to play tonight. League is still reviewing his hit and match penalty from yesterday. Hubert Labrie check in on defense. #HBH
— Zack Fisch (@zackfisch) January 14, 2018
The entire situation is an ugly one and for Martel to miss significant time in such a breakout year would truly be a shame. Wishing him a speedy recovery and a fruitful end to his 2017-18 campaign. Updates to follow as more information is released.
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Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports