Red Wings forward Drew Miller narrowly escaped a devastating eye injury Tuesday night against the Ottawa Senators, when he caught a stray skate to the upper part of his face right by the eye socket.
Miller was in position for the face-off just minutes into the game when the incident occurred. The puck was dropped and Miller took off to retrieve it, but sometime during his digging for the puck, Senators player Mark Stone fell forward onto the ice and his skate flew up into Miller's face.
As soon as Miller got up, it was quite obvious that he was injured by the blood you could see coming down from his face. Drew immediately skated off the ice to receive medical attention.
The Detroit Free Press reports that Miller suffered from two very large lacerations around the eye. Fortunately, there was no damage to the eye or his vision.
"It's a scary moment, for sure," Niklas Kronwall said. "But at the same time, we all found out fairly quickly that he was going to be OK."
Red Wings coach Mike Babcock says that he expects Miller to return, but he is not sure if it will be in time for Thursday's game against the Boston Bruins. According to Bleacher Report, the Wings are in third place in the Atlantic Division and carry a two-point lead over the Bruins in the standings.
Miller signed with the Red Wings in 2009 after being put on waivers by the Tampa Bay Lightning. Miller made his debut in the red and white against the Vancouver Canucks on November 12, 2009. Miller scored his first goal against the Nashville Predators on November 23.
Drew was originally brought in to be a temporary replacement for players who were injured, but he filled in so well that he was offered a one-year contract in the summer of 2010 for $650,000. During the following season, Miller played in a total of 68 games for the Red Wings. For most of the 2010-2011 season, Miller would play on the third or fourth line, usually with Justin Abdelkader, Darren Helm, and Kris Draper.
After a successful two seasons with the Wings, Miller would finally get the contract that would give him a home in Detroit. Drew would sign a two-year contract with the Wings worth $1.675 million dollars. Then, in 2013, Miller signed a three-year contract extension for $4.05 million dollars.
Drew is very lucky he had his helmet on last night. Although his visor did not prevent him from receiving the injury, it is most likely the reason Miller still has his vision today.
[Photo courtesy of John Rodenburg/Twitter]