Sports injuries are no new phenomenon but they have received a lot more recognition lately as medicine is improving and we are able to properly diagnose them more regularly. This is a kind of personal injury and now some athletes are suing for it because of the NHL and NFL league’s poor treatment of these ailments.
Chicago, ILThe family of Steve Montador, who died earlier in 2015 and reportedly had chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), has filed a lawsuit against the National Hockey League (NHL), putting athletes’ injury risks in the news again. The National Football League (NFL) and NHL have both faced lawsuits linked to various serious injuries, including concussion injuries. Other injuries sustained by athletes can include back and neck injuries.
Steve Montador was a former Chicago Blackhawks player, known for being physical. According to the Chicago Tribune (12/8/15), around 80 former NHL players are involved in a class-action lawsuit against the NHL, alleging the league did not adequately warn them about the long-term consequences of repeated head injuries. Montador reportedly suffered 15 documented concussions, four of which occurred within three months.
According to court documents, during his NHL career Montador was involved in 69 on-ice fights and sustained “thousands of sub-concussive brain traumas and multiple concussions, many of which were undiagnosed and/or undocumented.”
As a result, Montador’s family alleges Montador suffered memory problems, sleep disturbances, chronic pain, substance abuse, anxiety, depression and behavioral changes. After Montador died at age 35, a review of his brain found signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a deterioration of the brain. According to the Chicago Tribune article, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said there is no established link between playing in the NHL and brain disease.
The NHL and NFL have both faced lawsuits alleging they didn’t do enough to protect players from the risk of serious head injuries and did not warn players about the risks associated with repeated head injuries. The NFL has recently settled lawsuits it faced, although critics argue the settlement did not do enough to address CTE.
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