High-stick scares Rhett

ERIC FRANCIS -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 5:24 PM ET


DETROIT --  Rhett Warrener went from being a Jumbotron star at Friday's Detroit Tigers game to being a terrified patient at a hospital emergency ward yesterday.

 The Flames defenceman was accidentally clipped in the right eye by Steve Yzerman 15 minutes into yesterday's 5-2 loss, prompting a trip to the hospital where he complained of blurred vision.

 The incident occurred as Warrener was battling Derian Hatcher in the corner for the puck when Yzerman approached and had his stick lifted while tangled up with Stephane Yelle. There was no penalty on the play.

 Warrener immediately dropped to the ice and started writhing uncontrollably, clearly spooked by the prospect of having suffered a serious eye injury. Scrambling to his feet as trainer Gus Thorson ran onto the ice, he was helped into the dressing room while holding a towel over his face.

 Unable to see clearly, he was looked at by both team's doctors before being transported to the hospital. He returned to the arena later and sat at the end of the bench for the final five minutes with a visor attached to his helmet. With the game being out of hand at that point, Darryl Sutter opted not to play him.

 "We just didn't want to use him to be honest," said Sutter of his most experienced defenceman. "Their doctors cleared him to come back, not our doctors. That's as much as I know -- I just talked to him quickly on the bench. I didn't get a chance to talk to our doctors so for their doctors to clear him that's a good sign."

 Warrener was not made available to the media after the game but he'll likely play in Game 3 Tuesday.

 The Flames, who have already lost Denis Gauthier and Toni Lydman in the playoffs, had to make do with five young defencemen the rest of the game. That forced Robyn Regehr to play almost 26 minutes, while Steve Montador played almost 24 minutes.

 Montador did well for the most part but his inexperience showed on Detroit's second goal when he needlessly chased Mathieu Dandenault around the net before the defenceman set up Yzerman's first of two goals.

 "It's not something we can dwell on," said Montador, who has played with remarkable composure. "We've dealt with it before in Game 6 when we lost Gauthier. Even though we had a short bench we found a way to get through it."

 Of the Flames six defencemen Warrener has the most playoff experience with 73 games. Other than Andrew Ference, who has 27 games under his belt, no other Flames blueliner has played more than nine contests.

 Less than 24 hours earlier, Warrener was picked out the crowd at Comerica Park during Friday's Tigers/Cleveland Indians game to answer a trivia question on the stadium's outfield Jumbotron between innings.

 Sporting a Tigers jersey, a huge playoff gash on his nose and a massive grin, he was introduced as being from Saskatchewan, Canada, and asked which team Rusty Staub was traded from when he was acquired by the Tigers. He correctly answered Montreal, earning him a $100 gift certificate at the ballpark.


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