Players speak their mind on concussions

  • Jonathan Toews said it was tough to admit to himself he had a concussion last season.
Jonathan Toews said it was tough to admit to himself he had a concussion last… (William DeShazer/Chicago…)
February 21, 2013|RedEye

When dealing with athletes' pride, concussions become an even thornier issue. Brian Urlacher says he would lie about having one. Jonathan Toews struggled with admitting he had one. Here's what Bears and Blackhawks said about their own head injuries.

"Back then, it was just tape an aspirin to your helmet and you go back in. I've worked with some neurosurgeons and it's a very serious thing, man. My memory's pretty much gone. There are a lot of times when I walk into a room and forget why I walked in there."

—Jim McMahon, to the Tribune in November 2010

"Yeah, [I would lie to cover up a concussion]. There's a point in every game when you get hit and you're a little woozy. Not every game, but mostly every game you hit someone and you're like, 'Whoa, that was a good one.' I don't know how you can lie these days with all the crap they have to see who's concussed and who's not."

—Brian Urlacher, to reporters in November 2012

"When it comes down to it, you hate to admit it to yourself. You see so many guys around the league dealing with [concussions] right now, and you don't want to be one of those guys. It took some time to kind of come to grips with that and realize I had to rest and had to try to get better."

—Jonathan Toews, to the Chicago Sun-Times, after suffering a concussion in early 2012

"They were long days. I was so tired. I'd wake up and fall asleep again. All of a sudden I'd realize it was nighttime and I wasn't hungry because I'd feel sick. I'd try to open the window and the light hits you and you realize it's not good."

—Marian Hossa, to the Tribune, on the aftermath of the head injury he suffered in April 2012


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