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Doc to Pronger: No visor, no play

Oct 26, 2011, 1:31 PM EDT

source: AP

Tim Panaccio of CSN Philadelphia is reporting that Flyers D Chris Pronger will be wearing a visor when he returns from an eye injury — a decision that wasn’t made by Pronger, Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette or GM Paul Holmgren.

It was made by the doctor.

Stephen Goldman, the team ophthalmologist, told Pronger he would not give him medical clearance to play again without wearing the visor.

That settled things.

Pronger’s injury could have been much worse than merely a cut, blurred vision and swelling. He will miss at least two weeks (six or seven games) because of the injury.

On Tuesday afternoon, Holmgren said, “Chris Pronger was seen by Dr. Stephen Goldman today and is progressing very well.”

Panaccio also notes that Pronger is one of several Flyers that play without a shield — Jody Shelley, Matt Walker, Andreas Lilja, Wayne Simmonds and Max Talbot are the others — and that Laviolette wouldn’t attempt to make any of his players put one on.

As such, there’s a pretty interesting situation developing in Philly. Without reading too much into Dr. Goldman’s diagnosis, it would be fair to suggest the prevailing medical opinion is it’s safer to play hockey with eye protection than without. Yet the arguments against wearing visors — “it screws up my peripheral vision” and “it’s uncomfortable” and “I don’t want Don Cherry to mock me” — are still prevalent, especially in the Flyers dressing room.

  1. stakex - Oct 26, 2011 at 6:40 PM

    As a hockey player myself, I fully support a players right to choose not to wear a visor. A doctor should not be able to force a player into that decision unless there is a clear reason for it, such as making a player wear a face shield when they have a broken jaw that can really be messed up if it gets re-injured. Given that Pronger only has a fairly small cut and some swelling, its hard to see a practicle reason to require a shield… other then perhaps the doctors own philosophical objection to players not wearing them.

    Side Note: Everyone in the media really needs to stop trying to baby sit the players, and let them make their own decisions. I know you guys need to make these controversies to justify your existence, but where does it stop? Should we just ban hockey, and every contact sport for that matter, outright since they are inherently dangerous to play?

  2. tommytd - Oct 26, 2011 at 7:37 PM

    How about some mouth protection for this idiot.

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