A Progressive Look At Ben Lovejoy’s Battered Face (Pic + Vid)

Those who watched episode three of HBO’s 24/7: Road to the Winter Classic last night were treated to one of the most grueling parts of the game of hockey: the dreaded facial injury.

Most players opt for limited facial protection, but even those who wear visors covering half of their face are still susceptible to some rather nasty scars.  The Penguins’ Ben Lovejoy was the victim of such misfortune during a game against the Florida Panthers.  After scoring the first goal of his NHL career and getting into a fight, Lovejoy was one assist short of the Gordie Howe hat-trick.  However, his opportunity to achieve that rare feat was cut short after taking a slap shot to the face.

Lovejoy was taken off the ice and attended to by the Penguins’ medical staff, but that didn’t stop him from joining his teammates for their flight to Washington.  And for those of you who were unaware of the effect that flying can have on a facial bruise, the above images should help explain.

The image in the top right is of Ben’s face immediately following the Penguins’ game against the Panthers.  As for the images in the top right and bottom left corners, they were taken during the team’s flight to Washington as Sidney Crosby and Marc-Andre Fleury looked on in disgust.  And the final image of Lovejoy’s blown-up face (bottom right) was taken following the Pens’ victory over the Capitals.

You can see more of the Lovejoy story below, beginning at the 7:45 mark.  As for the best part, that comes at the 11:40 mark when Crosby and Fleury realize Ben’s face is the size of a basketball during their flight to the nation’s capital.

Tags: ben lovejoy, hbo 24/7: road to the winter classic, hockey, NHL, pittsburgh penguins,