Injuries are part of most sports, and while unfortunate, they are something most athletes have to learn to deal with. Some injuries are worse than others, however, and when Edmonton Oilers star Connor McDavid got hurt in an NHL game, his fans didn’t know if they would see him again. The center was dealt a big blow with his horrific injury, but the star battled through, returned to the ice, and remains a fan-favorite today.
A shining light
McDavid joined the Edmonton Oilers in 2015 as the number one draft pick. He was a star in the making, and it didn’t take him long to settle into life in the NHL. The exciting star was lighting the league up in no time, and quickly he established himself as one of the best players in the league.
McDavid was living up to his potential and, after just a few seasons, had managed to put himself in the conversation for best player in the NHL. He was the talisman for the Oilers, but his world came crashing down in the final regular season game in 2019.
Losing their star man
The worst possible thing happened to the exciting Oilers star when he was on the ice. McDavid is known for his lightning-fast skating speed, but for once, this would come back to bite him. As the center was rushing through on goal, he lost balance under pressure from his opponent and started sliding along the ice. It’s a pretty common occurrence in hockey, except, McDavid was careening right toward the goalposts.
McDavid hit the solid goalposts at high speed, the replays didn’t seem to show anything serious, but the player didn’t move from the ice. He knew something was wrong inside, and the center feared he had snapped his leg in two. McDavid was encouraged to his feet and managed to get himself off the ice, with assistance, before completely breaking down. The result was a tear of the PCL, tears to his lateral and medial menisci, a fracture of his bone, and a torn popliteus muscle. McDavid was looking at some serious time out of the sport.
Rehabbing instead of surgery
When McDavid found himself in conversations with doctors, he was told he had to make a choice. He could undergo reconstructive surgery, which would involve screws, plates, missing the entire 2019/20 season, and changes to the way he skated. McDavid didn’t like the sound of any of that and opted to rehab the injury instead.
This was unheard of, but it would give the center the best shot at a full recovery. The Oilers star began the recovery process but wasn’t expected to return any time soon. He managed to amaze just about everyone by working hard on his rehab and putting himself in contention for a start at the 2020/21 season. Just a few months after that horrific injury.
Miraculously McDavid was back on the ice in record time, and he looked as good as ever. The story was unheard of in hockey, and McDavid plans on bringing a documentary film out in the future to show his incredible recovery journey.