WATCH: Ex-Oiler Jordan Eberle answers bell for hit that broke the neck of other ex-Oiler Andrew Cogliano
Photo credit:Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
By Zach Laing1 month ago
On Tuesday night, ex-Edmonton Oiler Jordan Eberle got into his third career fight in the NHL, dropping the mitts with Colorado Avalanche forward Logan O’Connor.
The fight was rather unassuming, but it saw Eberle answer the bell for a devastating hit last year in the playoffs. It came in game six of the first round of the playoffs when Eberle hit Avs forward Andrew Cogliano from behind, with the latter falling head-first into the boards.
Cogliano suffered two fractures of the C6 vertebra in his neck and remarkably came back during that game to play.
And on Tuesday night, the two sides met for the first time since the playoffs last season. Just over a minute into the game, O’Connor approached Eberle along the wall, asking him to go, and the gloves were off. The two tried to get some separation, and Eberle could land two uppercuts while O’Connor responded with a few jabs.
For Eberle, it marks the third fight in his hockey career. His first came in January 2018 when he played for the New York Islanders and saw him drop the mitts with Philadelphia Flyers forward Scott Laughton. His second came 14 months later, still with the Islanders, when he fought another Flyer in Travis Konecny.
Apr 28, 2023; Seattle, Washington, USA; Colorado Avalanche head athletic trainer Matt Sokolowski tends to center Andrew Cogliano (11) during the second period against the Seattle Kraken in game six of the first round of the 2023 Stanely Cup Playoffs at Climate Pledge Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
Early in training camp this year, Cogliano said the injury was complex in the early days and caused him to contemplate retirement.
“You’ve got to think about things when injuries like that happen,” he said before talking about the fact he returned in that game six. “My personality is probably not the best in terms of really evaluating what’s going on. But I didn’t feel that bad, to be honest. We did all their (medical) testing and all the testing worked. Everything looked good, and I felt pretty good.
“In the third, I noticed now I definitely felt a little something on the right side there in the back of the beck. Thinking back on it, my neck was definitely in spasm in a way. It didn’t hurt too bad. I was already dealing with a shoulder injury. So, maybe I had a lot of adrenaline and things helping me out that way.”
It wasn’t until the following morning when Cogliano “had to peel myself off the bed. I knew something wasn’t right.”
Eberle and Cogliano were teammates in 2010-11 with the Edmonton Oilers, the former’s rookie campaign where he scored 18 goals and 43 points—for Cogliano, that season marked his last with the Oilers before he was traded to the Anaheim Ducks for a 2013 second-round pick.
Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing or reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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