Advertisement
  1. Sports
  2. /
  3. Lightning

Lightning’s Mikhail Sergachev takes errant puck to face in stride

Tampa Bay goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy mistakenly flung a puck at the defenseman’s face on Tuesday.
The Lightning's Andrei Vasilevskiy, left, Blake Coleman (20), Erik Cernak (81) and Barclay Goodrow (19) and referee Gord Dwyer (19) watch as Mikhail Sergachev (98) is escorted to the bench by a member of the staff after suffering an injury to the face during the second period of Tuesday's game in Dallas.
The Lightning's Andrei Vasilevskiy, left, Blake Coleman (20), Erik Cernak (81) and Barclay Goodrow (19) and referee Gord Dwyer (19) watch as Mikhail Sergachev (98) is escorted to the bench by a member of the staff after suffering an injury to the face during the second period of Tuesday's game in Dallas. [ TONY GUTIERREZ ]
Published Mar. 24
Updated Mar. 24

Andrei Vasilevskiy has made very few mistakes during his record-setting 12-game winning streak.

But even the best goaltender in the league is prone to panic every once in a while.

When Vasilevskiy was trying to clear a puck from behind the net in the second period of Tuesday’s 2-1 win over Dallas and didn’t feel the puck on his stick, that’s what he did. His reaction was to quickly corral the puck and fling it off the boards to safety.

The only problem was teammate Mikhail Sergachev’s face was in the way.

Sergachev had just skated across the end line to provide support when Vasilevskiy shot the puck, hitting Sergachev square in the face. The Lightning defenseman had to leave the game but returned later in the period with stitches above his upper lip.

“I tried to stop the puck behind the net,” Vasilevskiy explained. “I tried to look for our guys and then I turned my head back to see where the puck was and it wasn’t on my blade, so I kind of panicked a little bit and (was) just trying to put it on the board, and unfortunately Sergy’s face was in the way.

“Obviously, I apologized. That happens. It’s obviously not good for his face, but it happens.”

Sergachev took the incident in stride, posting a photo of the two on Instagram after the game with Vasilevskiy holding a puck from his record-setting win — Tuesday’s victory set a Lightning record for consecutive wins by a goalie — and Sergachev wearing a new battle scar.

“Congrats on the record @andreivasilevskiy88 👊🏼 next time shoot the puck around me please😂,” Sergachev posted.

Vasilevskiy responded in the comments with: “My apologies, comrade. 🙃”

Contact Eduardo A. Encina at eencina@tampabay.com. Follow @EddieInTheYard.

• • •

Thunderstruck: Celebrate the Tampa Bay Lightning’s one-of-a-kind championship season with this hardcover collector’s book