We’ve all had a few days to reflect on this issue and watch reactions to Todd Bertuzzi’s suspension. There’s good news and bad news. First the good:
[Steve] Moore, who was severely injured by an attack by Vancouver’s Todd Bertuzzi on Monday, returned via chartered jet. He will remain there indefinitely to continue rehabilitation from two cracked vertebrae in his neck, a closed head injury, a concussion and other facial injuries.
After Colorado’s 4-1 win over Phoenix on Sunday, Avalanche coach Tony Granato gave a progress report on Moore.
“I have seen him,” Granato said. “He’s doing better and hopefully making progress toward a full recovery.
“He is in pretty good spirits, and he is excited about the way the team has played since he has been gone. We had a nice little chat.
“I didn’t bring up whether he’ll play again. I think the best thing was to talk about everyday life. I didn’t want to bring up anything about hockey or what’s going on with that side of things. I think it is probably too early in his mind to start thinking about that as well.”
I’m just relieved that he seems to be out of immediate danger. Sure, I want him back on the ice next season. But I don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to claim that his life was threatened by Bertuzzi’s attack. His move to Denver, where a spinal cord specialty unit is located, is definitely a positive.
Now for the bad.
Fans show support with Bertuzzi rally. Canucks fans held a rally for their suspended star forward Saturday night.
The group, numbering between 300-500 people, marched around the Canucks’ arena and up several city blocks to listen to speakers. T-shirts reading “Free Bert” were quickly snatched up.
“All these people out here just want him to know that we still love him,” said Susan Hickey, who held up a banner that read “In Todd We Trust.”
“In Todd We Trust”?
Who are these people kidding? I understand the sentiment behind sticking with your man, but his act on the ice was reprehensible. The article notes that some of the fans were chanting “Get Well Moore”, but they also signed a petition asking the NHL to reconsider it’s suspension of Bertuzzi.
If there’s any reconsideration, it had better be about lengthening it. I really don’t understand how any real fan of the game can seriously expect any sort of amnesty or leniency on this. It’s incredible.
Media decried by GM: Canucks’ Burke rips team’s fine Vancouver General Manager Brian Burke isn’t happy about the $250,000 fine levied against his team for Bertuzzi’s attack. I wouldn’t be happy, either, but it would be Bertuzzi I was unhappy with. I doubt anyone anywhere outside of Vancouver city limits is going to be extending him or his team any sympathy on this matter.
Burke is questioning how seriously Moore was hurt. He thinks Bertuzzi has been portrayed unfairly by the media.
“You’re talking about a quality hockey player that made a mistake and all of that seems to be going down the drain with some people in the media, and it’s not fair,” Burke said. “Some of the (critical coverage) focused on the incident. Some of it focused on the fact that there are people in this room that think he should be warm and fuzzy and accommodating more than he is, and I think he’s gotten a much rougher ride than he deserved. On slow days, you’ve got to find something to do, I guess.”
Riiiiight. The sports blotter was empty, so the media manufactured a life-threatening attack by an ice hockey player during a game to pick things up a bit.
“Do I feel the seriousness of the injury has been fairly portrayed? My answer to that is, I think part of your jobs is analysis,” Burke said. “I’m not clear. A doctor was quoted here (Wednesday) as saying you can’t ascertain when that neck injury occurred. Mr. Moore falls down, Todd’s on top of him, then Andrei Nikolishin comes on top of him, then Mattias Ohlund comes on top of him and then Sean Pronger comes on top of him. There’s 850 pounds of hockey player on this young man. So, I don’t know why I’m the only one that looked at the tape and saw that.
(Emphasis mine.) Steve Moore “falls down”?!?!?!? FALLS DOWN?!?!?!?
“Steve Moore’s concussive symptoms are one issue, and I don’t think anybody’s made any kind of prediction on that. The neck fracture, as I understand it, are the small flanges on the back of the vertebrae. They’re called transverse processes, I believe.
“His spinal cord has not been displaced or bruised in any way and hasn’t lost any range of motion or function. I said to (a Canucks doctor), ‘What’s the recovery time?’ He said four to six weeks. I hope he is skating in four weeks.”
Excuse me a moment. It must be all those big words he used, but it sounds like he’s trying to minimize a broken neck. That can’t be it, right? Right?
Well, at least he’s mostly concerned with the money.
“I am shocked – shocked – at the size of the fine, given the tiny amount of attention given to what the club involvement was,” Burke said. “To the extent there’s been any suggestion that Marc Crawford didn’t do anything or did do anything inappropriate, I think is horribly unjust. As far as I can tell, the investigation into this matter lasted less than 10 minutes.
“But if this fine can be portrayed as saying that the general manager of this team didn’t take steps to fend this incident off, if I can take even 1 percent of the blame off Todd’s shoulders, I’ll take it all. But we need to move on from this. We need closure on this, and our players need to start focusing on hockey. We’re going to stop talking about this today.”
So, it’s a free country and what does the Vancouver Canuck organization have to do with the Vancouver Canuck players? At least he’s ready to move on. That’s terribly big of him to decide that closure has been achieved.
If it sounds like I’m trying to portray Mr. Burke in a negative light, I apologize. I’m not. I’m simply allowing Mr. Burke to portray himself in a negative light.