Confusion reigns after Jonathan Quick concussion protocol episode
The end of the first period in Monday’s Maple Leafs-Kings game brought us a big moment of confusion involving LA goaltender Jonathan Quick.
With three minutes to play, Quick took a blow to the head during a scramble in front of his net. He fell backwards into his crease, and grabbed at his mask, clearly shaken up. Play resumed for another 109 seconds before officials notified the Kings that the goaltender needed to leave the game after the independent concussion spotters called in a mandatory evaluation.
After some confusion and hesitance from Quick, he left the game and Darcy Kuemper entered for only 37 seconds before Quick returned.
“I don’t know what the [expletive] happened there,” Quick said via the LA Times. “I don’t know what happened. You have to ask the league.”
Kings head coach John Stevens explained just what happened after the game.
Stevens added that Quick wasn’t evaluated for a concussion because once the spotters determined the goaltender didn’t have to come out there was no need to look at him. He also said that the entire situation was “disruptive” and the Kings want to know why he wasn’t pulled immediately if the spotters saw something.
Here’s the official wording from the NHL/NHLPA Concussion Evaluation Management Protocol:
Dive deeper into that protocol and you’ll see that Quick’s clutching of his head was an immediate trigger for the spotter to call down for a removal.
A source told Sportsnet that the reason why Quick didn’t need an evaluation was that it was determined he was hit in the head by either Zach Hyman or Derek Forbert’s stick on the play. Maybe a glancing blow to the head from a stick isn’t the same as an elbow, forearm or shoulder, but it’s still a hit to the head, no? And wouldn’t that be worthy of at least some sort of evaluation, especially given the goaltender’s reaction?