Colorado Avalanche: Facing Concussions in Modern Hockey

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Jan 21, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Boston Bruins left wing David Pastrnak (88) and Colorado Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson (6) collide into the boards in the first period at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado Avalanche and Concussions

by Nadia Archuleta

The Colorado Avalanche have suffered from their fair share (if you can say such a thing) of concussions.

We already saw how players such as Adam Deadmarsh and Steve Moore had to end their careers prematurely due to concussions. Scott Parker still suffers from post-concussion symptoms long after retiring. Sad to say, Jesse Winchester may be facing early retirement.

Joey Hishon saw his development severely delayed by post-concussion syndrome.

There are a lot of current Colorado Avalanche players who have suffered from concussions and who have managed to return to play.

At the end of the 2013-14 season, center John Mitchell suffered a concussion. It kept him out for the entire playoffs. He battled symptoms the entire summer, and even came into the 2014 training camp still suffering from vision problems due to concussions. Luckily, they passed, and he’s been symptom-free for over a year now.

Colorado Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog suffered a concussion at the hands of (now teammate) San Jose Sharks defenseman Brad Stuart. The hit left him with headaches and sensitivity to light. He missed 11 games of the 2012-13 season.

During a game against the (then) Phoenix Coyotes in 2013, Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson suffered a concussion because of a dirty hit from Martin Hanzal. He missed 11 games. In another game against the (now) Arizona Coyotes, Hanzal went after him again:

Thank goodness this dirty Hanzal hit didn’t result in another concussion.

Indeed, as a fan I worry about the players getting concussions. I worry even more about the players who’ve already had concussions. Because as Kevin so aptly pointed out, subsequent concussions can have dire consequences even after players have recovered from the initial injury.

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