Injured Martin Reaches Out to Malone
CHN Staff Report
Video of Malone hit on Martin, which broke three bones in Martin's neck.
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Denver senior Jesse Martin is in stable condition at a Minnesota hospital, recovering from surgery to relieve swelling in his spine after suffering a broken neck in Saturday's game at North Dakota. He has feeling in all of his extremities after temporarily losing it after the hit, but has to wear a halo-type neck brace and still has numbness in his body.
Martin suffered three fractures in his neck after being checked by North Dakota's Brad Malone in the second period. Malone was given a five-minute major for charging and a game misconduct, though officials have been criticized for only making the call after knowing Martin was being taken off on a stretcher, unconscious.
According to the Denver Post, Martin called Malone on Monday.
"Jesse had heard Brad was having a tough time and he wanted Brad to know he had no hard feelings," Terry Martin told the Post. "Jesse doesn't think it was an illegal hit and he wanted Brad to know that."
According to reports, Martin was trying to skate out of the zone, had his head down, and was hit hard by Malone. As Martin was being taken off on a stretch, Malone was given a five-minute major penalty for charging and a game misconduct.
The game was scoreless at the time of the incident. Denver went on to win 3-0.
According to University of Denver Associate Director of Sports Medicine Aaron Leu, Martin suffered three fractures to his C-2 vertebrae in his neck and is in stable condition. Martin has feeling in his all of his extremities and will undergo further testing to determine if surgery is required.
Martin has helped the Pioneers to three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances during his DU career. He tallied 64 points on 32 goals and 32 assists in 120 career games.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Jesse and the entire Martin family during this most-difficult time,” Denver coach George Gwozdecky said. “Jesse is one of our team leaders and most-respected players in the locker room. Our players are determined to rally around him and assist in any way possible during the healing process.”
Denver plays a home-and-home series with Colorado College this weekend.
"He wants us to play our best," Denver's Kyle Ostrow told the Post. "It's going to be on our minds, for sure, and everybody reacts differently to these kinds of things, but I think everyone is going to put their best foot forward for him."