Adam Johnson: Man arrested in player’s U.K. hockey death

SHEFFIELD, England –

Police in England arrested a man Tuesday on suspicion of manslaughter in the death of American ice hockey player Adam Johnson, whose neck was cut by a skate during a game.

Johnson, 29, was playing for the Nottingham Panthers against the Sheffield Steelers in a Champions Cup game Oct. 28 when the blade cut his neck.

South Yorkshire Police did not name the suspect or provide his age. He was in police custody.

The player who cut Johnson’s neck was Matt Petgrave, 31, who plays for Sheffield.

“Our investigation launched immediately following this tragedy and we have been carrying out extensive inquiries ever since to piece together the events which led to the loss of Adam in these unprecedented circumstances,” Detective Chief Superintendent Becs Horsfall said.

Fans had a moment of silence for Johnson at the Steelers next game and gave Petgrave a standing ovation.

Johnson was a Minnesota native who appeared in a total of 13 NHL games with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2019 and 2020.

The English Ice Hockey Association, which governs the sport below the Elite League, reacted to Johnson’s death by requiring all players in England to wear neck guards from the start of 2024.

Messages sent to Johnson’s agent and a friend of the family seeking comment were not immediately returned.

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