Friday, September 30, 2011

Concussions and Hockey

I have posted on and off over the past few years about the concussion problem in football.  Of course, football is not the only sport that has this problem.  Hockey faces the same crisis, especially when its star of the moment, Sidney Crosby, has been sidelined by a concussion for more than half a season.  Ken Dryden, the former goalie great of the Canadiens, has a great piece at* about what needs to be done, at least as a start.
*  With this piece, Bill Simmons's little empire starts making a big dent behind the silly stories of pop culture and Red Sox collapses. 
The question Dryden raises now is whether the commissioner of hockey, Gary Bettman, will do what it takes.  Roger Goodell of the NFL has been mixed at best.  Changes in the kickoff rules are good, but how about requiring the safest possible helmets?  And how about getting the media folks to change their coverage and focus less on the hardest hits?  The game of football is great without focusing so much on the collisions.  I do think football has been making progress, with stories of guys going for the right kind of tackles.  But much more progress can and should be made.  Especially since the NFL sets the example for all other forms of football (college, high school, and younger).

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