- Hockey Of Tomorrow
- Flanders Cup, QMJHL facing a lawsuit, the safety of hockey helmets might finally improve
Flanders Cup, QMJHL facing a lawsuit, the safety of hockey helmets might finally improve
Your all-in-one innovation + positive impact + culture news in hockey.
Dear Hockey of Tomorrow reader,
We’ve decided to test out a new font for our weekly newsletter. Ya like it?
Don’t care? Ok, fair enough, let’s get to the news.
Our Featured Piece covers the Flanders Cup, which is taking place this weekend, from May 27 to May 28 in Belgium.
Wait, what is this Flanders Cup you speak of, Tom?
Well, glad you asked. It’s the international Powerchair Hockey Tournament.
The what-in-the-who, Tom?
“Powerchair Hockey is played by players with various disabilities who use electric wheelchairs, and has been around since the 70’s.
Despite the growth of Powerchair Hockey over the last 50 years, it is still fighting for official recognition. The sport has official committees in 13 countries, but a lot of countries still compete in the sport without official committee.”
We urge you to read more about the Flanders Cup below, along with some Powerchair Hockey history.
When Joseph Fornasier lost his vision at the age of 10, he thought that his dream of playing professional hockey had come to an end. In reality, it was the beginning of something bigger. With over 30,000+ followers on his Tiktok account, Fornasier is bringing awareness to the sport of blind hockey. Amanda tells you all about his inspiring story.
Eleni Demestihas is a player agent and owner of a Women’s Hockey Agency, called Hecate Sports Group. She sat down with Kristen to talk about her experience, her inspiration and her drive. Read about the mission she gave herself, which was always motivated by women's sports and how hard it is to be a female athlete. OPA!
....+ two stories that haven't been covered yet by our contributors
The Quebec Junior Major Hockey League (QMJHL) is facing a class-action lawsuit against its teams over alleged hazing abuse.
Head safety in hockey might take a major leap!
The QMJHL is in trouble… Again
Carl Latulippe, a former Quebec Major Junior Hockey League player, has filed a 15 million$ class-action lawsuit against the league and its teams.
Latulippe, who is now 45, played in the QMJHL between 1994 and 1996. He claims that he was abused during hazing rituals with two teams.
The first story was reported by the French-Canadian outlet La Presse last month, in a gut-wrenching piece that explains Latulippe’s experience when he first joined the Chicoutimi Saguenéens as a 16-year-old.
Latulippe said that he discussed the abuse with his coach, who replied that the hazing would “help build his character”.
When he was traded to the Drummondville Voltigeurs, the abuse continued.
He says he suffered from psychological consequences as a result of the alleged abuse. Latulippe played 55 QMJHL games.
He hasn’t been able to go back in an arena since.
In reaction to Latulippe’s lawsuit, Federal Sports Minister Pascale St-Onge admitted that hockey needs a culture change.
Things are reportedly changing, the mentality is evolving, but how many stories aren’t public yet? It is scary to think about all of these young players who have suffered for so many years.
You know why hotel managers are sticklers when it comes to smoking in rooms? No matter how long you clean the room, or how many chemicals you use to spray the beds, the carpets and the walls, smoking creates a residue that literally embeds itself into the fabric, the furniture and the drywall. It is virtually impossible to get the residues out of the smoking hotel rooms without tearing down things.
The off-kilter remarks expressed by Latulippe’s former coach are the metaphorical smoking hotel rooms. Sure, people aren’t smoking in the rooms today anymore and saying things so bluntly anymore, but just repainting the walls and spraying Febreeze won’t seal that stench. That’s why so many leaders are calling for a hockey-culture rebuild.
This “behind-the-scenes” talk is pervasive also when it comes to mental health, as bluntly admitted by Elliotte Friedman himself.
Let’s not give up on this game. But we need to be patient and open to the discussion, even if it takes time and as a community, we are uncomfortable.
Elliotte Friedman confirms that mental health in hockey is just talk and if you so much as mention it as Dubas did, it’s justification to be fired:
— Brett Pardy (@DrAntiqueiPod)
May 24, 2023
Better helmets, better hockey
Valor Hockey, a company imagined by former NHLer Pat LaFontaine, will soon be launching the first hockey helmet to debut with a five-star rating accredited by the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab, an independent group who rates helmets for concussion risk, as reported by The Athletic.
All hockey fans know him as a Hall of Famer and one of the greatest American hockey players to ever play the game.
But when LaFontaine thinks about his NHL career, it isn’t all roses and sunshine. His six diagnosed concussions and numerous other brain injuries are hard to forget.
He wants to make sport safer, and boy do we need people like him to spur change.
Alongside Dr. James Kelly, they have explored ways to make the helmets safer for two decades. This year, a mere 8 out of 63 hockey helmets earned five stars by the Virgina Tech group.
The group estimates that a two-star helmet offers 150 percent worse concussion protection comparing to a five star.
In his interview with The Athletic, Muskovitz said that current hockey helmet design comes from ‘‘ancient technology and tradition’’.
Hockey protective gear= ancient technology? You don’t say?
That’s it for this edition of the Hockey of Tomorrow newsletter. We’re coming in hot and heavy with lots of cool projects soon. Stay tuned.
And thanks again for reading this edition of Hockey of Tomorrow.
Tom Sychterz, Founder
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