REMORSEFUL Magpie Brodie Grundy insists there was no "malicious intent" in his crunching tackle that resulted in North Melbourne forward Ben Brown being hospitalised with concussion.
Grundy's second-quarter tackle was rewarded by the umpire as holding the ball before play was held up for several minutes as Brown left the field on the motorised stretcher.
The Roos' leading goalkicker and Coleman Medal contender had his arms pinned by Grundy in the tackle, with his head smacking into the Etihad Stadium turf.
After lying motionless for about a minute, Brown tried to get up, rolling onto his back but was unable to steady himself.
North Melbourne trainers and medical staff hurried to his side, stabilising his neck with a brace immediately.
Brown was eventually taken off on a stretcher, giving Roos fans a thumbs up as he was carted off into the rooms.
He was taken to hospital for observation.
Grundy told Channel Seven after the match that it was not his intention to hurt Brown.
"There was no malicious intent, that's not the player that I am," Grundy said.
"I felt pretty shaken up after it happened. I was pretty glad they stopped play because I didn't know what to do. It's terrible that he's gone to hospital so I'll definitely reach out to him tonight."
Grundy admitted he was "pretty stunned" to receive a free kick for the tackle.
He now faces a nervous wait ahead of Monday's Match Review Panel findings.
We're happy to say Ben Brown is ok after the second quarter incident. He's awake and talking and has been taken to hospital as a precaution. pic.twitter.com/dpnTidz0Ky— North Melbourne (@NMFCOfficial) August 5, 2017
The incident immediately prompted comparisons to Geelong star Patrick Dangerfield's tackle on Carlton's Matthew Kreuzer last week, which saw the Brownlow medallist banned for one match.
North Melbourne coach Brad Scott agreed with Grundy, telling reporters after the game he also did not think it was the Collingwood ruckman's intent to cause Brown harm.
"I don't think there is anything malicious in it, and I didn't think there was anything malicious in Patrick Dangerfield's tackle on Kreuzer," Scott said.
"It's just unfortunate. Accidents happen and we have to make sure we make the game as safe as possible, while still making sure it's a competitive combative sport."
Dangerfield's tackle was assessed by the MRP as careless conduct, with medium impact to the head.
He received a two-match suspension that was reduced to a one-week ban with an early guilty plea.
Grundy's tackle on Brown just before impact. Picture: Getty Images