Colorado Avalanche: Facing Concussions in Modern Hockey

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Colorado Avalanche Steve Moore

by Nadia Archuleta

One thing the NHL has done a good job of getting rid of is the brutal violence once associated with the sport.

On February 16, 2004, Colorado Avalanche forward Steve Moore checked Vancouver Canucks captain Markus Naslund with his shoulder. Naslund had his head down, and Moore’s shoulder contacted with it. Naslund suffered a concussion.

The NHL ruled Moore’s hit legal, and he didn’t receive a fine or a suspension. This enraged the Canucks, who vowed vengeance on Moore.

During the March 8, 2004 in Vancouver, our ever-lovely Matt Cooke (then of the Canucks) challenged Moore to a fight. Steve Moore, not a fighter, nonetheless acquitted himself. The incident should have been over.

It was not. Late in the third period a Canuck who makes Matt Cooke look like a saint took the ice — Todd Bertuzzi. He tried to engage Moore in a fight, but Steve had already answered that call.

So Bertuzzi enacted his vengeance in a more violent way (Warning — it’s sickening):

Steve Moore was motionless for 10 minutes before being removed from the ice. In addition to facial cuts and three fractured neck vertebrae, Moore suffered a concussion.

It was the concussion that kept him from ever playing hockey again.

Next: Concussions and the NFL