Skip to content

Letang’s wife found him on ground after stroke

Feb 27, 2014, 12:25 PM EDT

Kris Letang AP

On Thursday, Pittsburgh defenseman Kris Letang met with media for the first time since it was learned he suffered a stroke in late January, and shared some emotional details about the incident.

Letang’s wife, Catherine, found him on the floor the morning of the stroke — Jan. 29 — at which time Letang said he was alert but unable to function.

“My family is worried,” he said, per the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “That was the difficult part, when you see your mom crying, and your wife crying.

“The day before, I was totally fine. Then, I woke up the next morning and it went like this.”

Letang has been out of action since the stroke and is unsure if he’ll be able to return this season. He has started light workouts and will reportedly have another series of tests in 2-3 weeks, at which time a decision will be made about his playing future for the remainder of the campaign.

“I would like to step on the ice and play,” Letang explained, per NHL.com. “But there are many things that won’t allow me to do that.”

Following the stroke, initial tests revealed Letang has a small hole in the wall of his heart. It’s a defect that all people have before birth, but the hole seals shut for most people — here’s more, from the Trib:

PFO, or patent foramen ovale, affects 20 to 25 percent of Americans, according to doctors. Some of the holes have a flap-like opening; others do not.

All babies have the hole before they are born. After birth, the hole usually closes within 72 hours, sometimes with the first breath.

There was no definitive diagnosis that PFO caused the stroke. According to the Trib’s Josh Yohe, Letang doesn’t intend to have surgery to correct the hole, noting that doctors believe there’s a good chance he will play hockey again.

For now, though, the Pittsburgh blueliner is simply focusing on the present — not the future.

“I have some good days, some bad days,” he explained. “I’m trying to improve every day. I see doctors twice a week. We’ll go from there.”

Latest Posts
  1. Calder runner-up Stone says injured wrist is ‘100 percent’

    Aug 28, 2015, 10:15 PM EDT

    subbanstone

    You know, the one injured on “that” slash from P.K. Subban.

  2. Pens sign prospect Sprong to entry-level deal

    Aug 28, 2015, 7:45 PM EDT

    2015 NHL Draft - Portraits 2015 NHL Draft - Portraits

    The club’s top pick at this year’s draft.

  3. Kings bringing veteran goalie Budaj to camp on PTO

    Aug 28, 2015, 6:30 PM EDT

    Peter Budaj Peter Budaj

    Former Avs and Habs goalie spent all of last year in the AHL.

  4. Detroit adds analytics specialist to front office

    Aug 28, 2015, 5:15 PM EDT

    Colorado Avalanche v Detroit Red Wings Getty Images

    Yet another NHL club hiring a fancy stats guy.

  5. Stars re-sign Eakin: four years, $15.4 million

    Aug 28, 2015, 3:55 PM EDT

    Columbus Blue Jackets v Dallas Stars Columbus Blue Jackets v Dallas Stars

    Scored a career-high 19 goals and 40 points last year.

  6. Sharks’ biggest question: Does DeBoer make a difference?

    Aug 28, 2015, 3:00 PM EDT

    San Jose Sharks Name Peter Deboer Head Coach Getty Images

    Former Panthers, Devils head coach takes over a team that “hit a little bit of a rut.”

  7. Looking to make the leap: Mirco Mueller

    Aug 28, 2015, 1:40 PM EDT

    Vancouver Canucks v San Jose Sharks Getty Images

    After an up-and-down rookie year, he’s looking to solidify his spot.

  8. Hall of Famer Al Arbour passes away

    Aug 28, 2015, 12:19 PM EDT

    Pittsburgh Penguins v New York Islanders Getty Images

    Legendary Isles coach had been battling Parkinson’s and dementia.

  9. Poll: Who will be San Jose’s next captain?

    Aug 28, 2015, 12:00 PM EDT

    Joe Thornton Getty Images

    Bit of an issue last season, if you’ll recall.

  10. Under Pressure: Martin Jones

    Aug 28, 2015, 11:00 AM EDT

    Canada v Germany - 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Getty Images

    From little-used backup to clear-cut No. 1.

  11. San Jose Sharks ’15-16 Outlook

    Aug 28, 2015, 10:03 AM EDT

    Alex Stalock Getty Images

    It all comes down to goaltending.

  12. It’s San Jose Sharks Day at PHT

    Aug 28, 2015, 9:00 AM EDT

    Patrick Marleau Getty Images

    Their playoff streak ended after 10 straight appearances.

  13. Kings ink prospect Sharipzyanov to entry-level contract

    Aug 27, 2015, 10:00 PM EDT

    Damir Sharipzyanov Getty Images

    The defenseman had 34 points in 66 OHL games last season.

  14. Sabres interested in luring Franson

    Aug 27, 2015, 8:58 PM EDT

    Cody Franson Getty Images

    He might end up with a two-year deal.

  15. Ladd wants to re-sign before season starts

    Aug 27, 2015, 8:21 PM EDT

    Andrew Ladd Getty Images

    He’s entering the final season of his five-year, $22 million deal.

  16. AHL unveils schedule with California teams playing fewer games

    Aug 27, 2015, 6:48 PM EDT

    061315 comets mdd AP

    Playoff seeding will be determined by points percentage.

  17. Under pressure: Mike Johnston

    Aug 27, 2015, 4:25 PM EDT

    Mike Johnston Getty Images

    The Penguins are a win now team coming off of a quick first round exit.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kessel (1627)
  2. P. Kane (1286)
  3. S. Matthias (1132)
  4. D. Carcillo (1049)
  5. C. Ehrhoff (1022)