A huge shout out to Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette for jumping on this story from the get-go and now he has exposed even more troubling issues with how this concussion was actually handled. Lets remind people: that even though they call it “mild” there is nothing mild about any concussion.
Hickey has discovered that the Price injury did not occur recently (as they suggested in his previous story above), the Canadians actually mentioned his injury occurred on March 20th, this creates major issues;
That leads to the second issue and this one is a bit troubling. The March 20 date for the Desharnais hit means that Price played four games after suffering concussion. It means that he took seven flights, which any doctor will tell you isn’t advised.
The delay between the initial contact and Price’s decision Sunday to tell the team’s medical staff that he was having headaches and they weren’t going away indicates that the National Hockey League’s program to identify and treat concussions isn’t going to work if the players don’t recognize the fact they are injured.
The reality is that players hate being injured, hate being out of the lineups. The result is a macho culture that sees players attempting to hide injuries. Price isn’t the first Canadien to go through this exercise of denial. Mathieu Darche, who is as bright a player as you’ll find in pro hockey, experienced headaches for a week before he sought medical attention. It was determined that Darche had an inner-ear infection but he still had symptoms after the infection cleared up and he acknowledged that he had concussion symptoms.
Perhaps the NHL will listen to a real hockey journalist (we all know I have been screaming about this for a long time) when he suggests that the NHL is treading on thin ice when it comes to addressing the concussion issue;
If the league and its players are serious about dealing with concussions, they have to start dealing with the situation honestly. That means the players have to seek treatment when they’re having problems and the teams have to err on the side of caution when they are dealing with head injuries.