Tag: legal action

Wayne Simmonds

Banana-tosser slips away with light fine, deemed not a hate crime


You may not remember the name Chris Moorhouse, but he’s the hockey fan who threw a banana at Philadelphia’s Wayne Simmonds during the shootout of a preseason game in London, Ontario.

Moorhouse was booked for his actions and while his defense was that he didn’t know it was a racist gesture, the courts in Ontario are letting him off lightly. Moorhouse was fined $200 for tossing the banana at Simmonds while he skated in on his shootout attempt against the Red Wings in September.

As The Globe And Mail notes, there wasn’t sufficient evidence to charge Moorhouse with a hate crime despite the fact that it was very clearly a racial gesture. If Moorhouse was ignorant to that whole thing, it must be a wonderful world to live in where you just don’t know what anything means.

Suing the NHL for concussions would be a challenge

Gary Bettman

NHL agent Alan Walsh argues that the increased speed of the post-lockout era is a big factor in the increase in concussions. That’s a fine point, but it’s also clear that there’s been a dramatic improvement in the general knowledge and awareness regarding head injuries, which is part of the reason the numbers are escalating.

Improved detection and treatment is a promising development for active NHL players, but what about former players who suffered from less informed days? Ex-NFL players are filing class-action lawsuits regarding concussions, so could that happen to the NHL?

The Globe & Mail’s Paul Waldie took an in-depth look at that subject. He found that while the players might have a case, there would be at least three significant obstacles in their path.

1. Hindsight: Sure, we know more about concussions now, but could former players really apply current knowledge to past events? Besides, if that information was out there, then why did the players soldier on?

2. Making a direct link between concussions and their health issues: Concussions aren’t the only cause of many problems retired athletes struggle with, after all. This point seems less challenging to refute, but the league could counter that it’s possible those concussions happened before they even entered the NHL.

3. Assumption of risk: Hockey is a big-time contact sport, after all.

The major counterargument for the first and third obstacles would allege that the players were misinformed by the league and its teams about the risks they were taking regarding concussions. My guess is that it might be tough to prove that the NHL deliberately misled players on this subject, though.

It’s heartbreaking to hear stories about former athletes suffering from memory loss, social problems and other issues related to concussions long after they stop playing. Sadly, it wouldn’t be surprising if the legal system found that such risks simply came (and come?) with the job, though.

Don Cherry publically apologizes on CBC’s Coach’s Corner

2011 Home Hardware CHL-NHL Top Prospects Game

CBC lightning rod Don Cherry made waves two weeks ago when he publically called out former enforcers Chris Nilan, Stu Grimson, and Jim Thomsen. He said he was “disgusted” with the former enforcers because of their stance on fighting using words like “pukes,” “turncoats,” and “hypocrites.” Following the segment and some serious public outcry afterward, the three were considering legal action against the television personality.

Tonight, Cherry took the opportunity to apologize to the three former enforcers. From CBC:

“I gotta admit I was wrong on a lot of things,” Cherry said. “Three enforcers, tough guys, my type of guys, I threw them under the bus, and I’m sorry about it. I really am.”


“Chris and Stu never said that they took drugs because they were enforcers in the National Hockey League,” Cherry said. “Also, they never said they wanted fighting out of the game, that’s for sure.”

“I was wrong on that, 100 per cent wrong. And when you’re wrong, you have to admit it.”

You can see the full segment here.

What are the chances that the threat of a lawsuit had anything to do with the public apology. It was surprising nine days ago when Cherry publically went after the three former NHL tough guys—he’s been championing players like these for his entire career around the NHL. It didn’t take long for Chris Nilan to respond:

What do you think? Do you think it was good that Don Cherry apologized for his strong comments a week ago or should he have stayed true to his word.