Scary hit for star

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 4:08 PM ET

HAMILTON -- It looked so innocent.

Those were the words of Edmonton Eskimos head coach Danny Maciocia on the hit that left Jason Tucker with neck and back pain on the final play of the third quarter last night at Ivor Wynne Stadium.

As Tucker caught a two-yard pass from Ricky Ray at Hamilton's 22-yard line as the clock expired in third stanza, Tiger-Cat defensive back Jykine Bradley hammered him under his chin on a helmet-to-helmet hit. Tucker fell to the ground -somehow having the frame of mind to recover the ball - and then stayed nearly motionless for 15 minutes.

The good news for the Eskimos is that the all-star slotback appears to be just sore and was taken to hospital for precautionary reasons.

But that prognosis could change with an X-ray and further examination.

He was loaded into an ambulance, leaving as Edmonton was tied 6-6 with Hamilton, a game they would go on to win 19-13.

"He has got feeling in his extremities, fingers and legs," reported Maciocia after the game. "I was sort of reassured it was nothing serious, having said that anytime you get lifted off the ground in a stretcher it is a serious concern.

"I just reassured Jason what they were telling me and he told him I planned on seeing him tonight (Friday night) and hopefully he can travel with us (on Saturday morning)."

The play clearly rattled several Eskimos players. In fact, there were up to nine players on the field while Tucker was attended to by medical staff from both teams.

"Tuck and I are pretty close and it infuriated me," said Edmonton receiver Kamau Peterson on the play.

"It was a clean hit.

"I know Jykine from when I was here (playing in Hamilton). It was good to see both of them responsive. But it made me mad. It got me going."

Bradley was able to get to the bench under his own power after staying on the field - a few yards from Tucker - for a few minutes.

As for Edmonton's No. 83 -a seven-year Eskimo and four-time CFL all-star - he was flat on his face for a few minutes while moving his feet before being rolled over onto his back. From there his jersey was cut off and helmet face-mask removed before his head/neck were stabilized and taped to a stretcher board. He was then loaded onto an ambulance.

Tucker told the medical staff that he was worried about a neck fracture, but there was no early indication of that.


Videos

Photos