Tag:Concussions
Posted on: December 7, 2011 1:15 pm
Edited on: December 7, 2011 4:45 pm
 

Stars' Fistric suspended three games for charging

By Brian Stubits

The Shanahammer is getting some good use of late. On Wednesday, Brendan Shanahan swung his hammer of justice for the second time in as many days, laying down a three-game suspension for the Dallas Stars' Mark Fistric for his big hit on promising Islanders prospect Nino Niederreiter.

Without further ado, here is Shanahan telling you about the incident that occurred in a game ...

This suspension is rare in that it comes off a charging call -- or lack thereof. Shanahan focuses a lot on the fact that Fistric let the ice to make the hit on Niederreiter, a clear charge if there ever was in. The call wasn't made on the ice, but that doesn't deter the swift hand of Shanahan.

Making matters worse, Niederreiter suffered a concussion on the play. Combined with the fact that Fistric has faced supplemental discipline before in the form of a fine and it's the triple-trouble trio. The result is three games.

It was clear that the NHL was going to review this hit carefully, it seemed to be another perfect example of the hit they want eradicated from the league. The hit was made up high instead of to the body and it resulted in a concussed opponent.

But something that is sure to get the Dallas fans all upset is how this compares to the hit their own Tomas Vincour took earlier this season from Maple Leafs defenseman Luke Schenn. Here is that play again. Pretty similar, yes? I'll concede it's at least enough to allow Stars fans to feel wronged and upset by it.

More NHL Discipline News Here

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: December 3, 2011 10:00 pm
Edited on: December 14, 2011 2:45 pm
 

Niederreiter injured after hit from Fistric



By: Adam Gretz


New York Islanders forward Nino Niederreiter had to leave Saturday's game against the Dallas Stars early in the first period with what the team is calling "concussion-like symptoms" after he was hit by defenseman Mark Fistric along the boards.

It's sure to fire up another debate as to whether or not Brendan Shanahan will (or should) get involved, as it seems to be a hit to the head (that Niederreiter is suffering from concussion-like symptoms makes it pretty easy to reach that conclussion) and it appears that Fistric left his feet.

He was not penalized for the hit, but did receive a two-minute minor for roughing in the brief skirmish that followed. Islanders forward Matt Martin received a double-minor for roughing, meaning the Stars actually came out of the situation with a power play.

Niederreiter, the Islanders first-round pick in 2010, has been a healthy scratch for much of the season and Saturday night was just his sixth game of the year. He scored one goal over the previous five games.

During Saturday's game he skated just one shift and logged just 11 seconds of ice-time before exiting the game following the hit from Fistric.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: December 3, 2011 9:12 pm
Edited on: December 14, 2011 2:46 pm
 

David Perron scores in return to lineup



By: Adam Gretz

Appearing in an NHL game for the first time since last November due to a concussion, St. Louis Blues forward David Perron scored in the first period of his return to the lineup on Saturday night against the Chicago Blackhawks.

He missed 97 games due to the concussion that he suffered in a game against the San Jose Sharks when he was hit by Joe Thornton. Prior to the game on Saturday Perron Tweeted that Thornton sent him a text message wishing him luck in his return.

It took him just three shifts to score his first goal of the year, and it was a nice one as he went to the front of the net, picked up a loose puck and demonstrated some nice puckhandling ability in a tight space, beating Blackhawks goaltender Ray Emery.

Prior to his injury last year Perron had scored five goals in 10 games, and in 235 career games entering Saturday the former first-round pick had scored 53 goals over parts of four NHL seasons, including a career-high 20 during the 2009-10 campaign.

Previously At Eye On Hockey

Perron to return after missing 97 games
David Perron cleared for contact drills

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: December 2, 2011 4:14 pm
Edited on: December 2, 2011 4:15 pm
 

Blues' David Perron to return Sat. after 97 games

By Brian Stubits

David Perron is finally back for the St. Louis Blues.

The Blues announced that the forward will return to the game action with Saturday's game vs. the Chicago Blackhawks. Including missing Friday's game in Colorado, that will make it 97 games since Perron last played.

"It's been a long road obviously," Perron said Friday (courtesy of Jeremy Rutherford of St. Louis Post-Dispatch). "I didn't expect it to be that long. But I'm really excited to get back into the lineup."

Optimism picked up that Perron was nearing a return to game action when he was cleared for off-ice workouts on Sept. 26. Then he was given the OK for participating in full-contact drills on Nov. 19. A couple of setback-free weeks later, and his return is finally set to happen.

"It's the end of a long journey for David Perron and we're excited to get him back in a Blues' uniform," GM Doug Armstrong said. "One thing that never wavered was [Perron's] passion to get back on the ice."

He's been out since taking the following brutal hit to the side of his head from the San Jose Sharks' Joe Thornton on Nov. 4 of 2010.

Before the injury, Perron had scored five goals with two assists in 10 games for the Blues last season. For his career, the 23-year-old has 53 goals and 78 assists in 235 games, including highs of 20 goals in 2009-10 and 35 assists in 08-09.

The next question becomes how will Perron fit in with new coach Ken Hitchcock's lines? Andy Strickland at True Hockey says it's most likely that Perron will return to a top-six forward role right away and will likely spent most of his time with Patrik Berglund and Chris Stewart. There will likely be a little more line juggling, but this one can be filed under the "good problems" file.

I think I speak for a lot of hockey fans when I say it's great to see Perron back, it's been too long.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: December 2, 2011 10:27 am
Edited on: December 2, 2011 4:46 pm
 

Kings' Richards goes on IR after questionable hit

By Brian Stubits

The Kings might have won the game over the Florida Panthers on Thursday night, but they could have taken a couple of key losses, too.

First, defenseman Willie Mitchell left the game after one shift. Just 51 seconds of ice time and his night was done. The team didn't disclose anything about the injury after the game other than the fact that Mitchell had a lower-body injury. I think right now 85 percent of injuries in hockey are being disclosed either as upper-body or lower-body injuries.

However it was the injury to Mike Richards that has caught everybody's attention. People were wondering if it will catch Brendan Shanahan's eye, too. The answer is no. The league viewed the hit as a body check that just happened to have contact with the head.

Late in the second period, Richards was by the side boards in the same part of the ice as the Panthers' Sean Bergenheim and the puck. You can guess that the two made some contact. After the hit from Bergenheim, Richards seemed dazed for a moment before trying to chase down Bergenheim for the rest of his shift.

Richards received a double-minor (slashing then roughing) and Bergenheim took a minor (roughing). But Bergenheim was not penalized for the initial hit. Jarret Stoll also took a roughing minor and the Panthers had a four-minute power play, on which they didn't score.

But the biggest part was the fact that Richards didn't play after taking this double minor. When the third period began, he wasn't in the penalty box to serve the remainder of his penalty. Instead, he never returned to the bench. While the team wouldn't confirm, the L.A. Kings on-ice reporter on the TV broadcast said that he was being evaluated and sure made it sound like he was getting the mandatory quiet time after questionable hits.

"We haven't got a full report yet," coach Terry Murray said after the game. "The doctors and trainers are busy evaluating them, and they'll probably let me know a little bit more before I get away tonight. We'll have a better idea tomorrow."

Now it's tomorrow and here comes the part where Kings fans hold their breath. Richards will be placed on injury reserve, meaning he will be out for a minimum of a week. Mitchell won't go on IR, but he is expected to be out for a couple games, too.

So the question is ... dirty hit? The hit sure didn't seem like it in real time. There was nothing that really stuck out about the hit until you see the replay. Bergenheim did hit Richards on the chin with his shoulder, but it's tough for me to argue that was the intent or that it was even principle point of contact. The hit went through Richards' arm and Richards seems to be leaning forward a little at the time of impact making what seemed like a shoulder-to-shoulder hit turn into shoulder-to-chin. Bergenheim certainly didn't see anything wrong.

“It was almost like having the dirtiest hit on Wayne Gretzky," Bergenheim told Harvey Filakov of the Sun-Sentinel. “Keep your head up. He’s a physical player himself and has done some fairly dirty stuff. Actually the Booth hit under today’s standard would probably be a pretty long suspension. It was a perfect hit right in the chest."

The Booth hit is in reference to the shot then-Flyers captain Richards laid on former Panthers forward David Booth that cost Booth a good amount of time. So while very, very few players remain from that Florida team three seasons ago -- pretty much only Stephen Weiss -- the fans at least saw it as some retribution.

Hopefully, Richards is OK and suffered more from a minor neck injury instead of a concussion. That's the first order of business.

The second order ... should Bergenheim have heard from Shanahan? I think I made my stance clear (if I didn't then my answer is clear here: No), what's your take?

More NHL Discipline News Here

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: December 1, 2011 1:26 pm
 

Rangers' Marc Staal plans to return this season

By Brian Stubits

The Rangers have been incredibly quiet when it comes to the recovery of Marc Staal from the concussion he suffered at the hands of his brother Eric, the Carolina Hurricanes captain. But on Thursday the silence was broken.

Staal has begun taking light skates with some of his Rangers teammates, something that can only be categorized as a positive. But we learned from the Sidney Crosby situation, there is still a long way to go from here.

"Return long way away," Staal told the media in Carolina, where the Rangers play Thursday night, "but plan is to come back this year."

That cheer you just heard was the entire Rangers fan base in New York. Staal is a defensive force for them, a key cog on the back end. With the way the team is playing without him, the idea of his return is enough to excite the fans that the Rangers could be serious contenders in the East.

Staal was shutdown just before the season began. At the time, the Rangers said that it was just precautionary. It soon became much more than that. But his concussion actually goes back to last season, Feb. 22 to be exact.

Despite suffering the concussion, Marc played out the rest of the season with the Rangers, something that frankly shouldn't have happened. But he said on Thursday that he had convinced himself he was OK to play, that perhaps he "sugar coated things." In the end, though, it was his decision to play.

This is the hit from brother Eric that caused the concussion.

It's a very interesting dynamic, brother injuring brother. And considering the blood involved in the situation, it's no surprise that Marc said he holds no grudges against brother Eric. Instead he credits "my brothers, no matter how strange that sounds" for the support they have given him.

Now it's a matter of the Rangers giving him the medical support he needs to get right. First and foremost is his well-being. Only once they are certain that is OK will the hockey part come back into play.

But I have no doubt the Rangers have no problem being patient if it means they can get Staal by the end of the season at 100 percent.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: November 18, 2011 2:43 pm
Edited on: December 14, 2011 7:07 pm
 

David Perron cleared for contact drills



By: Adam Gretz


The St. Louis Blues received a bit of good news on Friday when it was announced by head coach Ken Hitchcock that forward David Perron has taken another step in his recovery from a concussion, and will now be cleared for contact drills in practice.

Being cleared for contact in practice and being able to return to the lineup for a game are clearly two very different things, but this is a big step for the 23-year-old forward as he continues his recovery. Perron hasn't appeared in a game for St. Louis in more than a year.

During a game against San Jose last Nov. 4, Perron was hit by Sharks forward Joe Thornton just as Thornton was exiting the penalty box, crushing him with an open-ice hit. The ensuing concussion has cost Perron 90 games and still counting. In 10 games last season he scored five goals (including one in the game against San Jose, after he was hit by Thornton) to go with two assists, after recording 50 and 47 points in the previous two seasons.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: November 13, 2011 8:17 pm
Edited on: December 14, 2011 7:08 pm
 

Ryan Miller suffered concussion on hit from Lucic

By Brian Stubits

The weekend got worse for the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday when GM Darcy Regier told Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News that his top goaltender, Ryan Miller, suffered a concussion in the team's 6-2 loss to the Bruins on Saturday night.

The play has already been discussed plenty. Miller went to the open ice to play a puck and took a big hit from Milan Lucic.

Miller remained in the game but was removed after the second period. Harrington reports Miller is feeling better the day after the hit.

The next question in this equation is if Lucic will be suspended. That's what the Sabres are looking for. There has been a lot of discussion on this call, whether or not Lucic even did anything wrong. But according to the letter of the law, goaltenders are not "fair game" when outside of the crease. Lucic was not in the right to hit Miller.

UPDATE: Lucic will have a hearing with Brendan Shanahan on Monday at 1 ET according to Bob McKenzie of TSN.

Again, here is what Rule 69.4 has to say specifically.

69.4 Contact Outside the Goal Crease - If an attacking player initiates any contact with a goalkeeper, other than incidental contact, while the goalkeeper is outside his goal crease, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.

A goalkeeper is not “fair game” just because he is outside the goal crease. The appropriate penalty should be assessed in every case where an attacking player makes unnecessary contact with the goalkeeper. However, incidental contact will be permitted when the goalkeeper is in the act of playing the puck outside his goal crease provided the attacking player has made a reasonable effort to avoid such unnecessary contact.

When a goalkeeper has played the puck outside of his crease and is then prevented from returning to his crease area due to the deliberate actions of an attacking player, such player may be penalized for goalkeeper interference. Similarly, the goalkeeper may be penalized, if by his actions outside of his crease he deliberately interferes with an attacking player who is attempting to play the puck or an opponent.

"If this hit and other types of hits like this are not suspended, we are opening up the possibility of losing goaltenders to injury," Regier said sternly to Harrington. "And not just injury, but concussion. ... When I look at the position of goaltending. in a lot of ways it's not unlike quarterback in football. I feel very strongly the protection has to be provided and players committing these types of action should be punished.

"The last thing we need to do in the NHL is to be losing our Stars to concussions on plays like this."

Bruins goalie Tim Thomas gave his opinion on the matter on Sunday, from Jimmy Murphy at ESPN Boston:

"Basically from my perspective, I was just trying to, after that happened, make sure that I was on my toes. I didn’t know if there would be a kind of retribution hit. That’s kind of the old school way. That’s really all I’ve got to say about it. I will say that as a goalie, you’re not even prepared for people to hit you in a situation like that. You’ve been trained over the course of your whole career that you’re not going to get hit in situations like that. So it must have taken him by surprise."

That sounds about as sympathetic as Thomas can be for his fellow goalie while still toeing the party, or in this case team, line.

I wouldn't be surprised if Lucic does face some discipline for the hit. Whether you like the rule or not, that's what it says, that a goalie is not fair game and the fact that Lucic followed through high increases the chances of further penalty. And you know Shanahan will consider the fact that Miller was concussed on the play too.

It's worth noting that another goalie this season have already sustained concussions. Rick DiPietro was out for a very short time before returning to his place in the three-headed goalie monster for the Islanders. James Reimer of the Ducks was also hit high to the head by an opponent and has been out since mid-October with what the team is calling "concussion-like symptoms" but refuses to call a concussion.

The Sabres will recall Drew MacIntyre to fill in while Miller is out. Luckily for Buffalo, Jhonas Enroth has played very well this season as Miller's backup, getting a lot of action with Miller's recent struggles.

Photo: US Presswire

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com