Last week in my squirt team's very first game of the season, two of my kids got concussions. One due to getting trip while skating full speed towards the side boards, and one from running straight into another kid and banging helmets. These were the second and third concussions players of mine have received in two years and Chemmy and I made quick work to ensure that a fourth hopefully wouldn't occur.
We sent off an email to all the parents informing them about concussions in the game of hockey; inspected every kids helmet to make sure it was still HECC certified; and made recommendations to those parents whose kids had crappy, unprotective helmets. In the end, nearly every kid on our team is now sporting either a Cascade M11, Bauer 9900, or a similar helmet. We're still working on the parents of the two kids still sporting helmets with just the beige foam padding in them. Why? Because they don't provide nearly the level of protection that the newer helmets due and when it comes to preventing concussions in children you gotta take every available precaution.
Now I have nothing riding on the protection of the kids on my team except for the fact that I don't want to see them get hurt, hence recommending new helmets. So then why are NHL teams still allowing their multi-million dollar superstars to wear outmoded protective equipment? With so much riding on their health; ticket sales, playoff births, merchandise sales, trade options; wouldn't protecting their investments as best they could be job number one for NHL teams? I remember when the M11 first debuted and players said they wouldn't wear it because it looks dorky. Players that I know wear one? Garnet Exelby, Brent Burns, and Chris Phillips. That's it. And Burns started wearing it after receiving a concussion himself! Sorry buddy, but you're closing the barn door after the horses have already escaped.
There was talk last year that Brian Burke had ordered trial helmets for the Marlies, but as far as I can tell no current Marlies wear them. Now there are a lot of NHLers that are wearing newer helmets, a large portion of those being Reebok's 8K helmet due to their deal with the league. When you're watching the game(s) tonight, take a close look at the players and find those still wearing the old crappy beige foam helmets. You'll be surprised at just how many there are with so much on the line.
Take the poll and let me know what you think about all this in the comments. Your links after the jump.
And some of its writers might be familiar to you.
You got rid of Jim Dorey and our chance at a cup!
Kinda wish it would've happened on its own accord.
I sure hope not. Ellis only won one cup!
Sleza with a European's take on the NHL playing games over there.
I got my hand back and it's only missing one Finger.
Amen to that brother.