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Damar Hamlin: Buffalo Bills player in critical condition in hospital after cardiac arrest on field during game against Cincinnati Bengals

Damar Hamlin was taken to hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest in match between Bills and Bengals; the Bills confirmed he remains in a critical condition; Hamlin's uncle, says his nephew was resuscitated twice; the NFL said the game will not resume this week after it was postponed

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Buffalo Bills' Damar Hamlin is in a critical condition in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest during the game against the Cincinnati Bengals in the NFL

NFL player Damar Hamlin remains in a critical condition in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest during the Monday Night Football game between the Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals.

The 24-year-old Bills defensive back briefly got to his feet after making what appeared to be a routine tackle on Bengals receiver Tee Higgins with five minutes and 58 seconds remaining in the first quarter but then collapsed to the ground.

The game in Cincinnati was halted as medical staff quickly attended to him and administered CPR for approximately 10 minutes, with players from both teams visibly distraught as the situation unfolded.

Hamlin's uncle, Dorrian Glenn, told CNN on Tuesday evening that his nephew was resuscitated twice, initially on the playing field and again at the hospital.

"They were resuscitating him on the field before they brought him in the hospital and then resuscitated him a second time when he got to the hospital," Glenn said.

"I just want to show my gratitude for the medical staff that were on hand because if not for them, my nephew probably wouldn't even be here.

"I'm not a crier, but I've never cried so hard in my life. Just to know, like, my nephew basically died on the field and they brought him back to life.

"They sedated him just to give a better chance for him to just continue to heal better. We are just taking it day by day. It seems like he's trending upwards in a positive way."

In a statement issued on Tuesday, Hamlin's family said they would provide updates on his wellbeing "as soon as we have them".

"On behalf of our family, we want to express our sincere gratitude for the love and support shown to Damar during this challenging time. We are deeply moved by the prayers, kind words and donations from fans around the country," said the family's statement, which was released via Hamlin's agent.

"We also want to acknowledge the dedicated first responders and healthcare professionals at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center who have provided exceptional care to Damar. We feel so blessed to be part of the Buffalo Bills organization and to have their support."

Hamlin was forefront in the minds of the city's NHL side, the Buffalo Sabres, from the time they woke up on a game day through the end of their 5-4 overtime victory at the Washington Capitals on Tuesday night.

The players donned 'LOVE FOR 3' shirts on their way into the area, while general manager Kevyn Adams wore Hamlin's jersey number in Bills colours on his lapel.

The team's official Twitter account also dedicated Tage Thompson's game-winning hat-trick to Hamlin, which was the center's third of the season with his winner coming in the third minute of overtime.

"What happened last night is something that makes the game itself and any sport secondary, so it was a tough day for all of us," Adams said. "There's an emotional connection to the city from our team. It was tough, to be honest, this morning, the conversations.

"But [players] also, I think, know how much our team means to this city and just wanted to be able to go out and do what we could today to put our best foot forward."

The Bills issued an update on Tuesday and said: "Damar Hamlin spent last night in the intensive care unit and remains there today (Tuesday) in critical condition at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center. We are grateful and thankful for the outpouring of support we have received thus far."

In an earlier statement, the Bills confirmed Hamlin's cardiac arrest, adding his "heartbeat was restored on the field and he was transferred to the UC Medical Center for further testing and treatment."

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LeBron James sends thoughts and prayers to Damar Hamlin and his family after the Buffalo Bills player suffered a cardiac arrest during an NFL game

Hamlin is in his second season in the NFL, after being taken in the sixth round of the 2021 NFL Draft by the Bills. He spent five years playing his college football at Pittsburgh, his hometown, appearing in 48 games for the Panthers.

He has started 14 games for the Bills this season in place of injured safety Micah Hyde, who suffered a neck injury in Week Two and has been on injured reserve since. Hamlin is tied for the second-most tackles on the team this year, with 91.

As Hamlin was taken in an ambulance to the hospital at 9.25pm local time, Bills head coach Sean McDermott was seen leading his team in prayer before players from both teams headed to the locker rooms, some with tears in their eyes.

Team-mate Stefon Diggs joined Hamlin at the hospital, with about 100 Bills and a few Bengals fans also gathering on the corner near the entrance, with some of them holding candles.

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Former NFL player Jason McCourty prays for and pays tribute to Damar Hamlin after he was taken to hospital in a 'critical condition', having suffered a cardiac arrest in the Bills' game against the Bengals on Monday night

When will the postponed match be replayed?

After Hamlin exited the field in an ambulance, it looked briefly as if play might resume, before Bengals head coach Zac Taylor and Bills counterpart McDermott met with game officials and the decision was made to pause the game, which the Bengals were leading 7-3.

Bengals owner Mike Brown released a statement Tuesday morning, saying: "First and foremost, the Bengals continue to send thoughts and prayers to Damar Hamlin and his family. Our hearts are with everyone in this unprecedented time - what we can do is support one another.

"Last night was supposed to be a great night for the NFL and a great showcase for our hometown. Instead, the human side of our sport became paramount...and in that moment, humanity and love rose to the forefront.

"As medical personnel undertook extraordinary measures, both teams demonstrated respect and compassion while fans in the stadium and people around the country bolstered the support for Damar and love for each other. The Bengals are thankful for the love and compassion shown by all. Praying for Damar."

The NFL announced a full postponement to the fixture just after 10pm, 90 minutes following kick-off. Jeff Miller, an executive vice president of the NFL, told reporters on a conference call early on Tuesday morning that the league had made no plans at this time to play the game. "That's not our consideration right now," he said. "Our concern is for the player and his wellbeing."

The game has major playoff implications as the NFL enters the final week of the 2022 regular season, with the Bills needing a win to reclaim the No 1 seed in the AFC in the hope of clinching a first-round bye and home advantage through the playoffs. The Bengals would have clinched the AFC North division title with a victory.

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Mike Florio and Peter King react to the cardiac arrest suffered on the field by Damar Hamlin on Monday night, saying a rescheduling of the game between the Bills and Bengals 'does not matter' in light of his critical condition in hospital

The Bills were scheduled to close out the regular season on Sunday against New England Patriots, while the Bengals are due to take on the Baltimore Ravens. The playoffs are due to begin on the weekend of January 14 and 15.

The NFL confirmed the match, which was stopped after the incident, will not be resumed this week. In a statement, the league added: "The NFL has made no decision regarding the possible resumption of the game at a later date.

"The league has not made any changes to the Week 18 regular season schedule. We will continue to provide additional information as it becomes available."

After the incident, people started donating to a GoFundMe page set up by Hamlin's charitable foundation, Chasing M's, to raise money to support a toy drive for in his community.

Hamlin's initial stated goal was $2,500, but by Tuesday evening, the page had reached almost $5.9m (£4.8m).

How the NFL reacted...

On a day when multiple teams called off media availability with coordinators and assistant coaches, Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin did speak to discuss Hamlin.

The Bills player grew up in suburban Pittsburg and Tomlin has forged a relationship with him through the years.

"I'll say this about Damar Hamlin: Man, it's a really personal thing for me being a Pittsburgher - and that young man be a Pittsburgher," Tomlin said. "I've known that guy, probably since he was about 12.

"I just got a lot of respect and love for him as a human being, his commitment to the pursuit of his goals and dreams of doing what it is he's doing right now, which is playing in the NFL, and to watch him make personal decisions and make that a realization.

"It's just an honour to get to know young people like that. Had an opportunity to express that to him, whenever I see him.

"We've played Buffalo each of the last two seasons, and he and I get to have a moment because it's just cool to not only appreciate these guys in terms of where they are now, but to know them since they were younger people and to watch their maturation their development, to watch them, you know, earn what they've been chasing...I got a lot of love for that young man."

Former Steelers safety, Ryan Clark, was himself in a critical condition in 2007 after high altitude conditions aggravated a sickle cell trait during a game in Denver.

Speaking on ESPN after the game's postponement following Hamlin's hospitalisation, Clark said: "I dealt with this before and I watched my team-mates for days come to my hospital bed and just cry.

"I had them call me and tell me that they didn't think I was going to make it. Now this team are going to have to deal with that - and they have no answer.

"The next time that we get upset at our favourite fantasy player, or if we're upset that the guy on our team doesn't make the play… we should remember that these men are putting their lives on the line to live their dream.

"Tonight Damar Hamlin's dream became a nightmare for not only himself, but his family and entire team."

Many fellow NFL players and teams and others in the sports world and beyond quickly offered their support and prayers on social media for Hamlin, while NBA star LeBron James sent his best wishes to the Bills safety when speaking to reporters after the Los Angeles Lakers' win over the Charlotte Hornets on Monday night.

"It was definitely the right call [to postpone the game] by Roger Goodell or whoever had the authority to make that call," James said. "The safety of players in all sports is always the most important.

"It is a terrible thing to see and I wish nothing but the best for that kid and the city of Buffalo, for the franchise of the Bills and the rest of the NFL and also the Bengals that were playing in that game as well.

"I'm a huge fan of the NFL and a huge fan of football and you never want to see anything like that happen."

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