Bruins' Marcus Johansson exits game with upper body injury after taking hard hit from 'Canes' Michael Ferland

Feb 28, 2019; Boston, MA: Boston Bruins left wing Marcus Johansson skates with the puck during the first period against the Tampa Bay Lightning at TD Garden. (Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports)
Feb 28, 2019; Boston, MA: Boston Bruins left wing Marcus Johansson skates with the puck during the first period against the Tampa Bay Lightning at TD Garden. (Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports)

By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com

Marcus Johansson left the Bruins' game against the Hurricanes just 3:15 into the first period after taking a big hit from winger Michael Ferland. The Bruins later announced before the second period that Johansson would not return due to an upper body injury.

Ferland threw a heavy but clean hit as Johansson carried the puck up the boards. He stayed on his feet and drove his shoulder into Johansson's as the collision sent both players toppling to the ice. Ferland emerged unscathed, but Johansson was slow to get up and immediately went to the Bruins locker room.

The Bruins responded by putting their fourth line of Joakim Nordstrom, Noel Acciari, and Chris Wagner on the ice, and the forward group peppered the Hurricanes with hits. On the next shift, David Backes dropped the gloves and fought Ferland right off the faceoff. Just 38 seconds of game time passed in the whole sequence after the Johansson injury.

The initial fear for Johansson would be a concussion, considering his recent history. But "upper body" indicates that it's not necessarily a head injury. At the same time, the mere fact that he didn't return to the game does not bode well.

Boston and Carolina were tied 2-2 through two periods on Tuesday.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at [email protected].