Former hockey pros and the NHL are locked in a legal war over head trauma
Once, in a game against the Calgary Flames, Los Angeles Kings star forward Bernie Nicholls was elbowed in the face so hard he broke his jaw.
Once, in a game against the Colorado Avalanche, a stick to the face split Nicholls’ head open for 25 stitches on his forehead.
Once, in a game in San Jose, Nicholls was left dizzy and dazed after Gary Roberts kicked his feet out from underneath him.
Nicholls was never diagnosed with a concussion. He finished all three games. Years later, the now 54-year-old battles daily dizziness, vertigo, headaches and a fleeting memory that "seems to be getting worse every day." After more than 1,200 combined regular season and playoff games in the NHL, the repeated hits to the head from a violent sport have taken their toll.