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Former enforcer Gino Odjick admitted to psychiatric ward this past weekend

Dec 3, 2013, 11:49 PM EDT

ginooap AP

Former Vancouver Canucks enforcer – and Pavel Bure bodyguard – Gino Odjick was admitted to the psychiatric ward of a Quebec-area hospital this past weekend, according to a report by The Journal de Montreal (translated and expanded upon by QMI’s Marc De Foy). This came shortly after burying his father, so it’s been a trying week for Odjick.

De Foy reports that the 43-year-old is showing “worrisome signs of post-concussion syndrome” and provided an untrue bit of optimism:

But Odjick isn’t out of the woods yet. Case in point: the false statement he made to me during our interview.

“With Marc Bergevin’s help, Michel Therrien got me ​​an appointment with Dr. Vincent Lacroix, head team physician for the Canadiens,” he said. “I’ll take tests at McGill University.”

I checked with Dr. Lacroix and Therrien, and the story wasn’t true.

“First I’ve heard of it,” Dr. Lacroix told me before the Canadiens-Devils game Monday.

De Foy ultimately concludes that Odjick is a “deeply confused man in dire need of help,” regardless of the cause of his issues.

The Vancouver Province details what seemed like a very different man not that long ago, as Odjick (second from the right in this post’s main image) was on hand for Bure’s jersey retirement this season:

Odjick looked happy and dapper during a public appearance at Rogers Arena on Nov. 2 when his buddy Pavel Bure had his number retired by the Canucks. He received a loud ovation from the crowd during his introduction. Odjick was a huge fan favourite during his playing days, when he served as Bure’s protector and took a regular shift.

Odjick appeared in 605 NHL regular season games, generating a whopping 2,567 penalty minutes, including 371 in 70 games during the 1996-97 season with the Vancouver Canucks.

  1. mp1131211 - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:31 AM

    Let me just cover the bases, James, and save everyone the trouble:

    James, if you don’t like fighting, go watch [non-fighting sport, most likely with high ratio of female athletes]!

    Stop supporting the wussification of the sport, Obrien!

    Fighting is a part of hockey! If you don’t like it go watch [non-fighting sport, most likely with high ratio of female athletes]!

    Great! Another attempt at getting rid of fighting from OUR sport! I hate these non-hockey people ruining OUR sport!

    What a joke! He’s probably just a washed up no-good trying to milk money!

    You’re welcome! Now you can just thumbs up me instead of wasting your time making an a** of yourself.

  2. muckleflugga - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    sad to hear…

    the toll on the health of these guys was and is incredible…so easily squandered in the name of entertainment

    recently deposed working class hero doctor donald s cherry will tell you the two hundred with potential to grow to eight thousand in the concussion lawsuit, are participating in a shameless cash grab…

    this while absolving himself and his kind of any responsibility; he as coach and front man for rock’em sock’em hockey particularly…

    small men with smaller penises getting their rocks off, watching and promoting a forum wherein bigger men are encouraged to bludgeon each other senseless…

    the game of hockey devolved to meet the basest of human needs; watch and hear the corporate denial to come…

    see how they run

  3. hockeyflow33 - Dec 4, 2013 at 1:56 AM

    Medical opinions from former enforcers are always correct.

    • joey4id - Dec 4, 2013 at 9:38 AM

      I read this article and comments with the intent of not responding. What else do I have to say about concussions that hasn’t been said? That was until I read your comment….. I get that you don’t think highly of the medical opinions from non medical personnel, let alone a former NHL enforcer and fellow human being. What I don’t get is despite all evidence of the causes and effects of head trauma presented by sanctioned medical entities you still side on the pro fighting side for your entertainment. If not the victims themselves, nor the medical entities can provide evidence, then who? NHL owners? Bettman?

      • hockeyflow33 - Dec 4, 2013 at 7:08 PM

        They aren’t victims, they’re willing participants. Many of us play hockey for free and would gladly swap places with these guys if our talents allowed.

    • joey4id - Dec 4, 2013 at 7:17 PM

      Using your logic if you willingly (or otherwise) get in a friend’s car and you get seriously injured in a car accident you are not a victim. Is that right? Do you know how to use a dictionary?

      • hockeyflow33 - Dec 4, 2013 at 9:24 PM

        No, that’s a horrible comparison.

  4. muckleflugga - Dec 4, 2013 at 2:22 AM


    you nailed it, it was likely odjick’s personal medical opinion that justified thirty two months of hospital care since 2002

    all those clinicians and emergency care admissions personnel and neurologists are so easily duped

    and then there’s cherry…

    • hockeyflow33 - Dec 4, 2013 at 7:09 PM

      Except you don’t know if it was from being dropped as a baby, a bad fall in peewees or a hit in the NHL.

      • mp1131211 - Dec 4, 2013 at 8:21 PM

        Concussion from NHL fights? Probably just dropped as a baby! lol!!

        I’ll have to add this one to my list.

  5. johnstone17 - Dec 4, 2013 at 8:03 AM

    I’m sorry to see anyone suffer from these symptoms. That said, didn’t Gino Odjick & everyone else that has played a contact sport for pay done so willingly? At some point personal responsibility has to be the bottom line. We all make decisions & we need to accept responsibility for those decisions.

    • ibieiniid - Dec 4, 2013 at 8:42 AM

      the argument in the lawsuit isn’t that the owners should pay because players got hurt and are still having to pay bills for that injury, it’s that the owners and coaches knew about the long-term effects they were going to cause but allowed the players to play through concussions. do I agree with it? honestly, I’m not quite sure yet. but the way I think about it is:

      Boss told employee to climb a ladder
      Employee climbed ladder
      A rung was broken and the employee fell and knocked his head
      Boss ensured employee that the rung was fixed and insisted that he climb back up or he’s fired
      Employee falls again
      Did the boss know the rung was still broken or not? <– That's where the lawsuit lies.

      • amityvillefun - Dec 4, 2013 at 9:30 AM

        Well put Ibie.

        Or as Olivier said in The Marathon Man:

        “But is it safe?”

      • johnstone17 - Dec 4, 2013 at 9:33 AM

        I get the part of it about employer/employee. However, playing a professional sport is hardly compatible to blue collar work. Anyone that claims that they don’t know how taking repeated blows to the head can be hazardous to their health is either a complete liar or complete idiot. No one needs a degree in neurology to understand the basic concept of this.

      • ibieiniid - Dec 4, 2013 at 9:35 AM

        but do you think Ali knew he’d have adverse effects when he fought decades ago? I don’t think the information was as commonly known when most of these players played. I mean, only recently have they publicly determined that concussions are bad enough to stick somebody in a “quiet room.”

      • joey4id - Dec 4, 2013 at 9:51 AM

        ibieiniid, who know I’m all about facts…. Right? 😉 I don’t believe the NHL hasn’t known for along time about the effects and causes of concussions. Proving it may be extremely difficult. However, they can’t deny not knowing it today, which is why I believe they will eventually ban fighting.

        Dementia pugilistica (DP) is a neurodegenerative disease or dementia that may affect amateur or professional boxers as well as athletes in other sports who suffer concussions.

        DP was first described in 1928 by a forensic pathologist, Dr. Harrison Stanford Martland, who was the chief medical examiner of Essex County in Newark, New Jersey in a Journal of the American Medical Association article, in which he noted the tremors, slowed movement, confusion, and speech problems typical of the condition. In 1973, a group led by J. A. Corsellis described the typical neuropathological findings of DP after post-mortem examinations of the brains of 15 former boxers.

      • ibieiniid - Dec 4, 2013 at 10:08 AM

        I know you’ll spit some percentages at me, but again, your arguments to ban fighting ALWAYS forget about the shear amount of injuries that are caused by hits. I know, I know, the odds that you’re hurt in a fight are higher than the odds that you’re hurt during a hit, but due to the high number of hits that happen, there’s far more players hurt from hits. Sure, banning fighting may prevent several of these incidents, but I think you’re taking the easy way out of the greater problem at hand if you’re just talking about banning fighting. There’s no way you can say “ban hitting” without being berated. That’d be the end to this sport. They really need to address making HITTING safer, that would make the biggest difference. But I don’t claim to have the answers to any of these issues. I’ve heard about eliminating bulky shoulder pads

        Since I’m on my simile sh** today… your argument that, probability-wise, fighting results in injury more often than hitting sounds like this to me:
        Cancer kills a sh**-ton more people than skydiving. But your odds of dying during each jump is higher than every person’s odds of dying of cancer. So ban skydiving instead of cancer, even though far less people skydive than live a life susceptible to cancer. (this is assuming we could just “ban” cancer. yeah, not the best simile, but I think you’ll get it)

      • ibieiniid - Dec 4, 2013 at 10:10 AM

        forgot to finish that first paragraph lol

        “I’ve heard about eliminating bulky shoulder pads–” I don’t know if that would work, but it sounds like a good first step to me.

      • joey4id - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:05 AM

        ibieiniid, No stats/percentages today. However, I will give you my take on your last comment. Your comparison to skydiving is disproportionate because no one here is pushing to eliminate hockey. The appropriate authorities have made whatever policies they deem necessary to make skydiving as safe as possible. Be it from mandatory training from accredited bodies requiring a minimum of hours before jumping with a minimum number of tandem jumps before solo jumping. Right! They’ve done whatever it takes to make it as safe as possible.
        If you would like to discuss the bigger issue of concussions in hockey, then I offer the following, which I have written here before.
        NHL should sanction world hockey organization to address the issue of concussions.
        What are the most likely causes, and potential solutions to reduce the number of concussions? As I have said before, and you also referenced it, the equipment has to be a major contributor of concussions. Why not get the hockey manufacturers/doctors in a room to assess the impact absorbed by the brain when a player is hit by and elbow or shoulder pad today and compare that to softer equipment worn before hard shell became the norm.
        Why are we seeing so many shoulder or elbow hits to the head? The body check is used as a defensive measure to impede the progress of the puck carrier. A body check is when a player drives his shoulder through the body of an opposing player with his elbows tucked in and his stick down. Your shoulder should be driven into the body (not the head). Do we need governing bodies like hockey Canada/USA/IIFH to mandate proper body checking at the minor and junior levels? Perhaps!
        Checking from behind (boarding) is another contributor causing concussions. Why are players plowing opponents into the boards when they can clearly see the opposing player’s number with enough time to pull up as opposed to hitting the player? Perhaps this goes back to teaching the kids at the minor and junior level to stop when they see the numbers, and maybe they should teach the players protect themselves more efficiently when they are playing the puck along the boards.
        Is the speed of the game a contributor of concussions? Should the red line be re-instituted? The game has changed so much of the course of the last 15-20 years. Have the changes made the game less safe? Are the rules adequately written to keep the players as safe as possible? How are the rules being enforced? Do they need more rules? Are the referees consistent?
        Are concussion policies available and implemented in all aspects of organized minor and professional hockey? Are they effectively and efficiently being applied and followed where they do exist?
        Is fighting really a way of policing the game? Why was there less fighting in the SCF last year yet no one was seriously injured? Why is Olympic hockey so entertaining w/o fighting?
        There are those (Shero, Bowman, Yzerman, Rutherford etc…) which are opposed to fighting and those (Burke, Cherry, Orr etc…) which still believe there is a place for fighting in the game. Get pro/anti fighting hockey brains in a room with neurologists, reps from the hockey manufacturing industry, government bodies, etc…. and come up with a plan. Listen to the science and determine what needs to be done to reduce the number of concussions to prevent others from getting CTE?

      • blomfeld - Dec 4, 2013 at 4:44 PM

        comrades Ibie & Joey …

        notwithstanding your ‘informative & intelligent’ exchange here, I suspect that Odjick unfortunately had some ‘serious’ issues right from the start, long before he ever became a hockey professional …

      • joey4id - Dec 4, 2013 at 5:10 PM

        blomfeld, Why would you say that? hope more and more players, ex or active will donate their brains to science. CTE can only be definitively diagnosed postmortem. They can actually distinguish between CTE (Alzheimer like symptoms) and Alzheimer. CTE is caused by repeated concussions which were not treated properly. CTE is always void of a chemical substance which is present in the brain of patients suffering from Alzheimer.

    • johnstone17 - Dec 4, 2013 at 10:23 AM

      Ibie, Ali was around boxers/ former boxers as he came up thru the amateur ranks. He had to have seen the punch drunk along the way. I still say you have to live with your decisions.

      • ibieiniid - Dec 4, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        You can say the same about the owners. If they knowingly sent players back to play with head injuries lingering, despite that being against the law or at least workplace regulations, that’s the decision they made, and if they have to pay for it then they have to live with it. I don’t see how people see this so one-sidedly for the owners. (IF the owners did it willingly,) the players weren’t the only ones that made a decision that resulted in the injuries.

      • ibieiniid - Dec 4, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        oh and regardless of whether they’re paid out or not, these players ARE living with their decisions, every day. I think they should be entitled to some medical care, at the very least.

      • johnstone17 - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:03 PM

        Ibie, I have no problem with the owners have to provide medical care, but ultimately we make our decisions.

    • shortsxit34 - Dec 4, 2013 at 5:52 PM

      I think this is the most rational post. The players went into a dangerous profession; and; unfortunately; are suffering far after they retired. The higher the risk, the higher the reward, and now we’re all learning that the reward isn’t worth any amount of money.

      I think that leaves us with two questions:
      1) The lawsuit–did the coaches/NHL know about the long-term effects?
      I think this will be a tough sell. Not only do the players need to prove that the coaches/NHL knew about the long-term effects, but they have to prove that they withheld that information from the players. If the players were just as well informed of the dangers from fighting, the lawsuit falls apart because it ends up coming back to responsibility from the choices they willingly made.

      2) The obvious hot topic: With the information we have now, will they continue to allow fighting? Everybody, (doctors, owners, GMs, coaches, players) are well informed about the dangers from concussions/repeated blows to the head. Should it be banned or should we let them make their own decisions?

  6. hosewater2 - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    Mama don’t let your kids grow up to receive repeated blows to the head.

  7. blackhawksdynasty - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:34 PM

    Poor joey….still doesn’t have a life, or even a meaningful hobby. Cover yourself in bubble wrap and lock yourself in a padded room…..the world will never be safe enough for you.

    • mp1131211 - Dec 4, 2013 at 8:14 PM


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