NHL Linesman Injured by Hit from Kevin Klein and Steven Stamkos, Out for the Playoffs (Videos)

linesman injured by klein and stamkos 2

On Monday night, NHL linesman Brad Kovachik was injured during Game 2 of the NHL’s Eastern Conference Finals. Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos checked New York’s Kevin Klein as he was entering the Lightning zone, sending him right into Kovachik, who was manning the blue line.

After the collision Kovachik was unable to put any weight on his left leg and had to be helped off the ice. The game was then delayed while the backup linesman suited up.

The official word from the NHL? Kovachik sprained his knee and is out indefinitely. The unofficial word from Rangers beat writer Andrew Gross? It was the MCL, and Kovachik is done for the playoffs.

The amazing thing about all this is that, from one angle, the hit doesn’t even look that bad. And it doesn’t look that bad because, despite his injury, Kovachik manages to stay on his feet and make the call on the dump-in. Because in hockey, even the referees are tough:

Meanwhile, from the other angle, you can clearly see Kovachik’s knee get hyperextended:

That’s a bummer. It doesn’t happen often, but you hate to see an NHL linesman injured in the line of duty.

Best of luck to Brad Kovachik for a speedy recovery.

Tags: 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs, injuries, New York Rangers, NHL, Referees, Tampa Bay Lightning,