Sunday, November 16, 2008

Injury hiding

This (A-rod haters should be sure and click)doesn't have to do with hockey or real sports injuries, but you should still vote for the All-Star game anyway. Now back to your regularly scheduled rant.

People have been grumbling about the NHL policy of hiding injuries, and I think that's dumb for several reasons. Keep in mind I'm writing this from an athlete's perspective, so I am on their side.

1.)The teams have no obligation whatsoever to tell the fans about the injuries. Your boss doesn't put it in the paper that you have a medical problem, so why should theirs?

2.)As an athlete, I fully understand hiding injuries. I am famous for not saying anything until I absolutely can't take it any more. You don't want to let the team down, and you don't want to seem like a wuss. There is something to be said for just playing through the pain, though there is also something to be said for being smart about it. Sometimes the sports culture takes playing through pain a little too far, which can lead to life ruining injuries. Overall for minor things, the players don't want to be seen as weak, so they hide the injuries, and probably wish the press would too.

3.) Not all opponents are into the gentlemanly play and sportsmanship thing. Some players will go for dudes where they know they are hurting. It's not fun having someone try to seperate your shoulder when they know you are hurting, trust me. (not that it's fun anytime, actually) Saying you are playing hurt is like painting a target on your back for some guys.

4.) It might explain why someone is playing like crap, but as long as the coach knows, then it's fine. As much as we'd like to, it's not our job as fans to make the lineups.

5.) The second the team said Burns was having surgery, the Wild fans all went nuts. It was a minor surgery that he recovered quickly from, but still. It shakes the confidence of the fans in the player. Surgeries can't always put you back to rights completely, but they sure can do a lot of good. The bad part about them is, people look at you like you will fall apart again any second. Disclosure of injuries lowers the confidence level the fans have in certain players and makes them all freak out about what could be nothing in the long run. Not a lot of motivation for the teams to say something if it means the fans won't be happy. Hockey is a dangerous sport, but that doesn't always register with people.


Cortney said...

When it really comes down to it, I totally agree with you. The press/fans are always going to want full disclosure, it's just part of the game. But in situations like Nick Schultz pointed out with the whole Darcy Tucker thing, players like that will totally exploit any injury that has been leaked about an opposing player. For the players safety, it should be kept under wraps. And it's really none of our stinkin' business.

Kirsten said...

Nick Schultz has good reason to say that. Darcy Tucker, what a douche.