This weekend, an ex-National Hockey League (NHL) player for the Pittsburgh Penguins named Adam Johnson was tragically killed during the course of a game. Johnson was playing for the Nottingham Panthers part of the Elite Ice Hockey League against the Sheffield Steelers when his throat was slashed by the blade of an opponent’s skate. Captured on broadcast, the injury was clearly immediately critical with Johnson immediately losing significant amounts of blood. He died shortly after.
Warning: the video is graphic and tragic. So much so, Twitter won’t even let us embed it. You can watch it here, though.
The league is calling the incident a tragic “freak” accident but the broadcast caught the entire incident for all to review and while his death may not have been the intention, the injury did not look accidental to many eyes. Americans seem particularly outraged by the incident as it appears that foreign outlets and the league are perfectly happy to accept the narrative that Petgrave “accidentally” fell and therefore raised his skate injuring and killing Johnson. The investigation from the authorities is still ongoing.
The man who killed Johnson (accidentally or otherwise) is Matt Petgrave is a 31 year old player originally from Canada. Some say that Petgrave has a long history of unsportsmanlike behavior and violence on the ice. There is no way to casually verify this information. There is a record of his indefinite suspension from a different hockey league in 2018 but very oddly, no record whatsoever of what the suspension was in regard to or what happened during the game on April 7, 2018 which resulted in his suspension. Almost as though certain internet search providers have assisted in burying information which is relevant to condemn Petgrave in public opinion. No matter what is buried, it’s undeniable that Petgrave had the most penalty minutes of any player in his league last season.
Regardless of his completely relevant history that media is (probably) intentionally suppressing, the video speaks for itself. To many eyes it is clear that Petgrave jumps off one skate and launches at Johnson intending to kick him. The media narrative is that Petgrave collided with an opponent, lost balance and somehow “fell” legs forward into Johnson’s neck. A feat of physics many would believe to be nearly impossible.
Whatever the case may be, there is a legal concept known as “the fact of a body.” Johnson was killed by Petgrave per the video whether it was an accident or not. Certainly, some kind of justice should prevail on behalf of his family and fiance who have been left behind.