November 22, 2005

Red Wings’ Fischer stable after heart stops during game

SALVO, North Carolina (Reuters) - Detroit Red Wings
defenseman Jiri Fischer, whose heart stopped beating during an
National Hockey League game, was reported to be stable in a
Detroit hospital on Tuesday.

"He is in stable condition. He'll be here at the hospital
for the next two days," Red Wings spokesman John Hahn told
reporters. "He's in good spirits and doing very well."

Fischer suffered a seizure and collapsed on the team bench
during the first period of Monday night's game with the
Nashville Predators. The game was later suspended.

Hahn said more tests would be performed on the 25-year-old
Czech who has suffered heart problems before.

"His heart had stopped, and there was no pulse," Red Wings
coach Mike Babcock said.

"But they hooked up the auto-defibrillator and they shocked
him ... and they continued with the CPR."

Hahn said Fischer was visited at the hospital after the
game by a number of team mates and he "was described as very

Fischer's father said the player's family planned to fly to
the United States.

"We've already spoken with Jiri by phone, and he will
remain in hospital hooked up to some machines to monitor his
condition. I expect we will leave (the Czech Republic) to see
him as soon as possible," the CTK news agency quoted Fischer's
father as saying.

With 7:31 left to play in the opening period, play was
halted when Fischer came off the ice after a shift, sat down on
the bench and slumped on to the shoulder of a team mate before
slipping onto the ground.

Babcock quickly jumped up on to the bench, alerting
officials while team doctors raced to the player's aid.

Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman said: "Without question it
was the scariest incident I've been involved in.

"You see the guy laying there and the doctors doing what
they're doing. You fear for the guy's life," the 22-year NHL
veteran said.

A first-round pick by the Red Wings in 1998, Fischer has
three goals and five assists in 23 games this season.