Adam Johnson: Tributes from “heartbroken” clubs and ice hockey fans after Nottingham Panthers player died in match against Sheffield Steelers

Tributes have flooded in for Nottingham Panthers player Adam Johnson, who tragically died last night, October 28, after a freak accident during a match against Sheffield Steelers.
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Adam Johnson has died, aged 29, following a freak accident during a match between Sheffield Steelers and Nottingham Panthers

Fans were evacuated from Sheffield Utilita Arena, and emergency services attended to treat Johnson.

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It was announced this morning that the “incredible person" and "outstanding player" has passed away.

Nottingham Panthers released a touching tribute to their number 47, which reads: “The Panthers would like to send our thoughts and condolences to Adam's family, his partner, and all his friends at this extremely difficult time.

Adam Johnson was fatally injured during Saturday's game (Pic: Panthers Images)Adam Johnson was fatally injured during Saturday's game (Pic: Panthers Images)
Adam Johnson was fatally injured during Saturday's game (Pic: Panthers Images)

“Everyone at the club including players, staff, management, and ownership are heartbroken at the news of Adam's passing.

“Our thoughts are also with the fans and staff of both clubs, especially those who attended or were following the game, who will be devastated following today's news.”

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Fans reportedly left the arena in tears after witnessing the accident.

Nottingham Panthers’ statement goes on: “Adam, our number 47, was not only an outstanding ice hockey player, but also a great teammate and an incredible person with his whole life ahead of him. The Club will dearly miss him and will never ever forget him.

“We ask that the privacy of Adam's family and friends, and everyone at the club is respected at this difficult time as we all seek to come to terms with our grief. Rest in peace Adam.”

Adam Johnson (Photo: Nottingham Panthers)Adam Johnson (Photo: Nottingham Panthers)
Adam Johnson (Photo: Nottingham Panthers)

As a mark of respect, Sheffield Wednesday has announced a minute’s silence to take place today before kick-off at Hillsborough.

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SWFC said: “Our thoughts are with Adam’s family, friends, teammates and everyone affected by the events of yesterday evening. RIP.”

More than 8,000 fans witnessed the horrific incident in the second period, and have been directed by organisations including the Elite Ice Hockey League to reach out for support.

The Elite Ice Hockey League said in a statement: “The thoughts and condolences of everyone connected with the EIHL are with Adam’s family, friends and team mates at this incredibly sad and difficult time. We would also ask everyone to respect the privacy of Adam’s family at this time.

“Many of us will have found Saturday’s events very distressing. Please take care of yourselves and each other. Further help and advice is available [from the NHS].”

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The National Hockey League, based in North America, also spoke out about his passing, calling the accident “horrific”, and wishing their deepest condolences on behalf of the hockey community.

They added: “We are all here for you during this time. #sticksoutfor47”

The Nottingham Panthers’ game against Manchester today has been postponed along with all other Elite League games. 

They said in a statement: “We ask for everyone's understanding and patience regarding this news and ask that fans refrain from emailing or contacting the club as our staff come to terms with today’s tragic news.”

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A post at 8:30 this morning from the ice hockey podcast, 4000 and Counting, reads: “The news we hoped we would not have to post, but sadly it has been confirmed by his family that sadly Adam Johnson passed away.

“All of us here at 4000 and Counting would like to pass on our condolences to the family, friends and teammates of Adam Johnson. Our hearts break for them. 

“To all the other players, coaches, fans and officials from Sheffield Steelers and Nottingham Panthers, we are sorry you had to go through this. Our DMs are open for anyone who is struggling. Rest in peace #47”

Dennis Chenier replied: “This is absolutely heartbreaking. I can't even fathom the pain his friends and family are going through.”

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The Twitter account of panthers’ mascot, Paws, said: “Words cannot describe the feeling in response to the devastating news this morning. 

“We have friendly banter, but today we stand as one, we've lost one of our own, and we will never forget Adam Johnson.”

The NHS offers guidance online for those who have witnessed a traumatic event, which is available online here.