Denna Laing, Boston Pride forward in the National Women’s Hockey League, suffered a significant spinal injury at the Outdoor Women’s Classic, the league announced in a statement Friday.
The league said doctors continue to evaluate her status. The Laing family released a statement:
“Denna was thrilled to be taking part in the inaugural season of the National Women’s Hockey League and was absolutely delighted to be one of the pioneers in a breakthrough moment for her sport – the Outdoor Women’s Classic,” the Laing family said in a statement.
“Tragically, Denna suffered a severe spinal cord injury playing the sport she loves. As of today, Denna has limited movement of her arms and no feeling in her legs. Our prayer going forward is that Denna can be moved from the Intensive Care Unit to a Rehabilitation Center and continue to fight everyday with her trademark grit and resolve.
“With respect to her long term prognosis, right now there are more questions than answers. We have received an incredible outpouring of love and support from countless friends and family members while we try to navigate this overwhelming situation. We are eternally grateful to everyone who continues to offer support as we take on this challenge together.”
NWHL commissioner Dani Rylan said in a statement that players around the league will wear a sticker with the No. 24 on their helmets in tribute to Denna Laing.
There was an outpouring of support from around the hockey world on Twitter, offering thoughts and prayers for Laing and her family.
“Everyone at the National Hockey League, including the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens, joins Denna Laing’s coaches, teammates, friends and fans in wishing Denna the very best as she confronts the challenges ahead,” said NHL commissioner Gary Bettman in a statement.
“While we are certain Denna will be served well by the tenaciousness that is her trademark, we also will work with the Laing family to rally the support of the hockey family during Denna’s rehabilitation.”