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Michael Nylander Breaks Neck On Hit By Derek Meech (Video)

In an AHL game between the Griffins and Americans last Saturday, Rochester's Michael Nylander broke his neck on a hit made by Grand Rapids' Derek Meech. The hit that caused the injury wasn't ferocious by any means (as seen in the video below), and it didn't appear to be illegal. Nylander simply fell into the boards awkwardly and suffered what can only be described as a freak injury.

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There was some concern that this injury could be the end of Nylander's career, but it turns out that won't be the case. Nylander underwent successful surgery on Monday to fuse his C-5 and C-6 vertebrae together and he is expected to make a full recovery.

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"Thankfully this happened without neurologic deficit, he didn’t lose feeling," Dr. Robert Bronstein, the Americans’ team doctor, told the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle on Tuesday. "A cervical spine injury can be catastrophic." 

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Nylander could actually return to action later this season if everything goes according to plan.