Jaccob Slavin injury update: Hurricanes defenseman exits after taking massive hit from Panthers’ Sam Bennett
The Hurricanes needed a miracle just to give the Panthers a scare in the Eastern Conference Final. After defenseman Jaccob Slavin went down on Wednesday night, they didn’t get it.
Slavin took a huge hit from Panthers center Sam Bennett just over a minute into Game 4, with his head hitting the end boards and his body slamming to the ice. He was forced to leave the game.
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Sam Bennett with a hit behind the net on Jaccob Slavin
Slavin was escorted to the locker room by a trainer pic.twitter.com/qEaKDK52EL
— B/R Open Ice (@BR_OpenIce) May 25, 2023
While it was a devastating hit, officials ruled it a legal one. Slavin was handling the puck and was hit in the chest by Bennett. Because he was looking down at the puck, Slavin was still blindsided by the blow.
The Panthers emerged with a power play anyway. Carolina’s Brent Burns and Jordan Martinook were called for two-minute minor penalties (slashing and cross-checking, respectively) after a post-hit scrum. Panthers star Matthew Tkachuk was called for slashing as well.
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Frustration was at an all-time high for the Hurricanes, who lost the first three games of the series and gave up a goal less than a minute before the hit. Slavin’s status is now a moot point for Carolina with the team’s season over, but his health is still a concern considering how hard of a hit he took.
Here’s what is known about Slavin’s injury after the hit from Bennett.
Jaccob Slavin injury update
The Hurricanes announced later in the first period that Slavin had been ruled out for the rest of the game with an upper-body injury.
Jaccob Slavin will not return to tonight’s game due to an upper-body injury.
— Hurricanes PR (@CanesPR) May 25, 2023
Slavin was wobbly immediately after the hit, and it’s no surprise Carolina was cautious after his head appeared to hit the wall as he fell to the ice.
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The 29-year-old had six points through 14 playoff games entering Wednesday. He has been held without a point by the Panthers in the series, though that has been the case for much of the Hurricanes’ roster. Carolina scored just three goals over the first three games.
Losing Slavin, who finished ninth in Norris Trophy voting a year ago, represented a major blow to a team that sat one loss away from elimination. With the Hurricanes now out, all of the focus will be on getting Slavin back to full health as carefully as possible.