Concussions in sport are back on the ice hockey agenda after Liam Stewart - son of pop legend Rod - has decided against playing the rest of the season.
The Guildford Flames star was out for seven weeks but tried to return against Sheffield Steelers. “The symptoms came right back hard...I’ve decided to do what’s best for my health and well being and hang up my skates for the rest of the season” he announced.
The decision was widely supported by others in British hockey including Steeler Zack Fitzgerald, who has suffered with similar issues in his career.
Pascal Morency was probably the best Steeler example of concussion danger,
In 2014, the Canadian was injured in his first competitive game of the season- and on his return to action he felt concussion-like symptoms after a check from behind by Callum Boyd (Edinburgh Capitals.) Morency’s season with Steelers was to be his last.
Before him, Stefan Sjogren was nailed by Cardiff Devils’ Brad Both in the 2005-06 - and still is troubled by head-aches to this day.
Of global significance, the concussions to NHL superstar Sydney Crosby have made the headlines on multiple occasions.
Years ago, players, coaches and even medical staff would shrug off the effects. But now, thankfully, the hockey world has woken up to the dangers - with Stewart taking the action that was needed.
Meanwhile, Steelers will await for the ok from their transport suppliers before heading off to Scotland for tomorrow’s planned League game at Braehead Clan.
Coach Paul Thompson said: “We want the game to go ahead, if the bus company says yes, our bags are packed.
“The boys have had three days off, which was needed.
“When they came in on Thursday they were energised and excited to be back and we had a great practice.
“Braehead Clan are fighting for their Play Off life, it is so tight down there.
“We know we will be facing a motivated club that will play desperate hockey and do anything to get the points.
“We will go with the same line up as last week, work hard, be focused. If we do that I’m confident we’ll come back from Glasgow with the points.”