Stanley Cup is over, but injuries may remain

The Stanley Cup has come to an end, but what is left of this NHL season besides heartbroken fans of teams other than the Boston Burins? Unfortunately what is left, are the lingering effects of injuries that these athletes have endured (and probably property damage in downtown Vancouver from the rioting after the Americans swept a victory right underneath the Canadians in their favorite pastime). As every sports fan knows, hockey can be one of the most brutal sports, but of course that is also the appeal of the game. ESPN has a list of the status of current injuries from June 14-17 that has over 10 different players, and three of these players suffered concussions. Nathan Horton was knocked out in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup, and had "absolutely no chance" of playing in Game 7 (if there would have been one).

Some fans may not realize the significant impact concussions have on players and the amount of time they are supposed to sit out. The Canadian Medical Association Journal did the largest study ever on concussions in the NHL. An article about the study said players with "[h]eadache, low energy or fatigue, memory loss, and abnormal neurological exam were significant predictors of time loss for players with concussions." Basically, if players are suffering from any of these symptoms they should not play or there could be significant ramifications later in life.

We all remember the news and studies surrounding the death of Former NHLer Reggie Flemining. According to an article, during his six seasons in the NHL, he suffered from over 20 concussions. Researchers at Boston University School of Medicine found that at the time of his death he was suffering from degenerative brain disease. This was the first time a hockey player had been diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy which aided in the increasing concern for concussions in hockey.

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