Coach Todd Nelson yelled at Grand Rapids Griffins forward Alden Hirschfeld to leave the ice during the second period of their game against the Milwaukee Admirals on Friday night.
The Griffins had too many skaters out at once. Hirschfeld needed to come off. But as Nelson called for him, he saw Hirschfeld just freeze up. He eventually returned to the bench, but something was off. Nelson thought it could have been the result of a hit. But it wasn’t.
Hirschfeld was having a seizure, and collapsed on the bench. Coach Todd Nelson waved for help. Paramedics rushed to help him, along with Griffins medical and training staffs. He finally sat back up. There was a 10-minute delay, before Hirschfeld was carted off the ice on a stretcher. He was taken to a local hospital for observation.
The Griffins were leading 4-1 at the time. The teams returned to their locker rooms while the ice was resurfaced, and the game was resumed with 6:19 left in the period. Grand Rapids would win, 4-2.
“He has a past history of seizures. It’s never happened during a game,” said coach Nelson after the game. “He apparently had a couple before, but it was the first time I experienced it.”
Hirschfeld is an Ohio native who attended Miami University (OH). He’s played in the minor leagues since 2011, and split time between Grand Rapids and the ECHL Toledo Walleye this season.
The Griffins released a statement on Saturday morning:
Alden suffered a seizure during the game but is now resting with his family at the hospital. The Griffins appreciate the overwhelming show of support expressed by fans and colleagues throughout the hockey world.
Very scary scene, especially with Rich Peverley of the Dallas Stars back on our minds in the last week. Hopefully Hirschfeld is OK, and makes the right decisions for himself and his family.
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