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Flames defenceman TJ Brodie back home, resting after collapsing at practice

 TJ Brodie #7 of the Calgary Flames fights on the boards with Gabriel Bourque #57 of the Colorado Avalanche in the third period during Game Three of the Western Conference First Round during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Pepsi Center on April 15, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
TJ Brodie #7 of the Calgary Flames fights on the boards with Gabriel Bourque #57 of the Colorado Avalanche in the third period during Game Three of the Western Conference First Round during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Pepsi Center on April 15, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

Calgary Flames defenceman TJ Brodie was resting at home Thursday evening, a positive development after he was stretchered off the ice and taken to hospital after a terrifying scene during an early-afternoon practice at Scotiabank Saddledome.

During a routine drill, the 29-year-old was standing by himself near the blue-line when he collapsed and started convulsing.

Team medical staff rushed to his side, and an ambulance was called.

The Flames announced shortly afterward that Brodie was “alert and responsive,” and an evening statement brought more good news .

“TJ Brodie experienced an episode on-ice at practice today in Calgary. Following tests conducted at a local hospital, TJ has been discharged and is doing well in recovery at home with his family.”

Flames general manager Brad Treliving will provide a further update Friday morning.

There was a moment of confusion when Brodie — a husband and proud father of a young daughter — fell to the ice Thursday, as coaches and players initially weren’t sure what was happening. The convulsions looked to have paused and he had been lying motionless before the movements, which looked like uncontrollable muscle contractions, started again.

Head coach Bill Peters, who was standing near Brodie and directing the skate, immediately stopped the drill and alerted the medical staff.

The players quickly called to the Flames’ owners suite — where Treliving and other front-office personnel typically watch practice — for help, yelling: “Hey! Hey! Doc! Doc!”

Treliving raced down to ice level and dialled 911. Multiple members of the media also called 911.

Flames assistant athletic therapist Mike Gudmundson and athletic trainer/massage therapist James Borelli were first at Brodie’s side, while players, coaches and other team staff gathered around as they awaited the ambulance. Saddledome security members and reporters looked on, stunned.

All were visibly shaken.

When first responders arrived, almost exactly 10 minutes after the incident occurred, Brodie was alert and appeared to be moving his extremities and talking. He was sitting upright in a stretcher when he was wheeled off the ice.

“Our good wishes go out to TJ and (his wife) Amber. He’s a great kid,” said Sportsnet’s Brian Burke, formerly the president of hockey operations in Calgary, during a Thursday afternoon appearance on Tim & Sid. “I’m hearing good things. I’m hearing he’s alert and he’s resting comfortably.

“I’ve had experiences with a couple things like this, where it can be as routine as low blood sugar or low blood pressure, and then it could be something way worse. So let’s hope it’s on the (minor) side of the scale. But he’s in good spirits, resting comfortably.”

The Flames halted practice immediately after the medical emergency and Treliving, Peters and some of Brodie’s teammates were headed straight to the hospital to see the soft-spoken defenceman from Chatham, Ont. They did not comment to the media before leaving the rink.

The team will return to the ice Friday before departing for a two-game road trip to the desert — Saturday’s matinee against the Arizona Coyotes (2 p.m. MT, Sportsnet Flames/Sportsnet 960 The Fan) and Sunday’s showdown with the Vegas Golden Knights (5 p.m. MT, Sportsnet West/Sportsnet 960 The Fan).

Now in his ninth season at the Saddledome, Brodie has totalled 591 games at the NHL level, all in the Flaming C uniform. In 21 appearances so far this fall, No. 7 has zero goals and eight assists and ranks sixth on the team in ice time, averaging 19:13 per outing.

— With files from Wes Gilbertson

Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2019

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