Best Panthers Player (2008)

Richard Zednik

It might be the only hockey clip you saw all year, from February 10, in Buffalo, as the Panthers took on the Sabers and Olli Jokinen was speeding down the wing toward the corner. Right winger Richard Zednik was coming from behind the goal to the same corner. Jokinen got hit and flipped upside-down. By horrible chance, one of his skates caught Zednik across the throat, slicing his external carotid artery, spewing blood onto the ice like the famous elevator scene in The Shining. Zednik, one tough Slovak, stood up, covered his potentially fatal gash, and skated to the bench. He was rushed into surgery, where doctors saved his life. Zednik missed the rest of the season, but the Panthers missed the playoffs anyway, and his single act of badassery was enough to ensure him the New Times pick for best Panther.


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