Referee's Unfortunate Incident Adds Unexpected Twist to Rangers-Panthers Clash

Sam Jones
June 2, 2024  (12:04)

Referee's Unfortunate Incident Adds Unexpected Twist to Rangers-Panthers Clash
Photo credit: Charles Wenzelberg / New York Post

In an event that veered from thrilling to comical, a referee experienced a painfully memorable moment during the latest showdown between the New York Rangers and the Florida Panthers.

As the game unfolded, the audience witnessed an incident that was as unpredictable as hockey itself—a referee took a direct hit from a puck in a rather delicate area.
A Misdirected Puck Leads to an Unforeseen Pause
The incident occurred midway through the third period when Panthers forward Evan Rodrigues attempted to dump the puck into the offensive zone. Positioned unfortunately in the trajectory was referee Devin Berg, who received the puck right in the groin. The impact was not only a shock to Berg but also momentarily brought the game to a standstill. Berg found himself down on the ice, a pause necessary to regain his composure. Miraculously, despite the painful encounter, he managed to stay in the game, a testament to his resilience and dedication to the sport.
Moments ago in tonight's heated game between the Rangers and Panthers, a hilarious sight occurred - a referee took a puck straight to the groin.

Increasing Incidents Involving Referees
This season appears to have seen an uptick in referees finding themselves in the line of fire, quite literally. The speed of the NHL games continues to escalate, and with it, the risks to everyone on the ice, including the veteran referees. Earlier this season, an incident involving referee Steve Kozari and player Haydn Fleury resulted in Kozari being stretchered off the ice to a hospital after a collision during a routine play.
Playoff Implications and What Lies Ahead
The game itself was critical for both teams. The Panthers demonstrated a solid defensive effort, clinching their spot in the Stanley Cup Final for the second consecutive year. Despite a late-game rally by the Rangers, highlighted by breaking the shutout in the closing moments, they failed to secure the necessary second goal, leaving the Panthers victorious.
As the Panthers prepare for their upcoming challenge in the Stanley Cup Final, all eyes are now on the Edmonton Oilers. If the Oilers clinch the final win in the Western Conference final, they will set the stage for what promises to be an electrifying battle against the Panthers for the coveted Stanley Cup.
This unexpected incident with referee Devin Berg adds another layer to the narrative of this NHL season—a reminder of the unpredictability and the physical sacrifices made by those who govern the game, ensuring its integrity and fairness.
JUNE 2   |   53 ANSWERS
Referee's Unfortunate Incident Adds Unexpected Twist to Rangers-Panthers Clash

If the Stanley Cup Final were to be held in the Western Conference, would you pick Edmonton or Dallas to represent the conference?

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