DETROIT (AP) – Detroit Red Wings defenseman Jiri Fischer was “doing very, very well” Tuesday, a day after he collapsed on the bench during a game and a defibrillator was used to help revive him.

“It’s been a tough 12 hours for our organization,” Ken Holland said at a news conference at Joe Louis Arena. “The great news is that Jiri Fischer is doing very, very well.”

Holland and team physician Tony Colucci – who performed CPR on Fischer on the bench Monday night – said the player was “in good spirits.”

Fischer, 25, was in good condition after he began having convulsions on the bench late in the first period of a game against the Nashville Predators. Colucci wasn’t able to detect a pulse after Fischer collapsed, and an auto defibrillator was used on Fischer.

After performing CPR, Colucci said he detected a good pulse and Fischer was taken out of the arena by ambulance to Detroit Receiving Hospital. Colucci said Fischer’s heart might have stopped, but he didn’t know for how long.

Fischer’s blood pressure and heart rate were stable by the time he got to the hospital.

“There’s no way to speculate on what triggered it,” Colucci said.

The team had announced to the crowd Monday night that Fischer had a seizure, but Red Wings coach Mike Babcock later said Fischer’s heart had to be restarted. “His heart was stopped,” Babcock said.

On Tuesday, when asked how long Fischer’s heart had stopped, Colucci said: “Sometimes when you’re feeling for a pulse you can’t really say did it stop, or does he have a very weak, thready pulse.”

Colucci said he didn’t know when Fischer could play again or how long he will remain in the hospital.

“We’re going to evaluate him on a daily basis,” he said.

The Red Wings practiced Tuesday ahead of Wednesday’s home game. Afterward, players and Babcock said their thoughts remained with Fischer as they prepared to play the Colorado Avalanche.

“You just think about how bad Jiri Fischer would like to be playing hockey,” Babcock said. “We have that chance. We better make good on that chance.”

Fischer was diagnosed with a heart abnormality in September 2002, causing him to miss two days of practice. The problem was found on an electrocardiogram as part of a routine battery of tests during the Red Wings’ preseason physicals.

Colucci said Tuesday that tests were being conducted to determine whether the convulsions were related to the abnormality. When the 2002 result came back, Fischer was given a stress test that he passed. He said his heart essentially is a little thicker than normal.

Team owner Mike Ilitch, Fischer’s fiancee, teammates and coaches visited the Czech Republic native in small groups Monday night in the hospital.

Play was stopped with 7:30 left in the period after the Red Wings alerted officials to a problem. Medical personnel worked on Fischer at the door to the bench for several minutes before he was wheeled back toward the Red Wings dressing room.

Holland said Red Wings management consulted with the players, the Predators and the NHL and made the decision to postpone the game.

Holland said it hasn’t yet been decided when the game will be played.

AP-ES-11-22-05 1626EST


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.