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Salvador Retires - The Players's Tribune


HellOnICE
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This was a shocking article. He played the last several years with concussions. 

 

 

 

The following preseason, everything changed. I got into a little scrap, and my opponent punched my helmet with a pretty weak shot. It sent me to my knees. I’m thinking, Okay, that’s weird.

After that, every time the puck would get rimmed around the boards or I’d try to receive a pass during practice, my stick would completely miss the puck. I mean, I couldn’t chalk this up to a few bad workouts. I’d go to make a pass and the puck wouldn’t even be on my stick. This was serious. My depth perception was totally off. It was an embarrassing blow to my confidence. I worried that I was letting my teammates down. Now the fear was starting to creep in. Maybe I lost more than just a step…

 

 

Read it here: http://www.theplayerstribune.com/bryce-salvador-devils-retirement/

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A few instant reactions from me: 

 

Now that I am reading this, I feel terrible for Sal. The guy tried so hard. It puts those a$$holes into perspective who were booing him. 

 

At the same time, what the fvck were the Devils doctors doing, letting him back out there? Also, with Lou and Peter, they are just as culpable in this craziness. Lou gave him THREE YEARS as a thank you, we all knew that, but jesus - this was a mess. This guy had serious problems. 

 

THis is why these lawsuits exist and I wonder if Sal will be apart of it.

 

Love you Sal, I hope the Devils can do something to honor your couple of years as a Captain. 

Edited by HellOnICE
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The people who booed him were always dirtbags - I can't imagine what that felt like for him.  Maybe that's why Bryce wanted to write this article.  Thinking of Salvador in a Devils' uniform, we'll always have 2012 and that great pass to Zidlicky in the slot against the Flyers; the goal to win Game 5 of the Cup Finals shot into the net I was watching.

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A few instant reactions from me: 

 

Now that I am reading this, I feel terrible for Sal. The guy tried so hard. It puts those a$$holes into perspective who were booing him. 

 

At the same time, what the fvck were the Devils doctors doing, letting him back out there? Also, with Lou and Peter, they are just as culpable in this craziness. Lou gave him THREE YEARS as a thank you, we all knew that, but jesus - this was a mess. This guy had serious problems. 

 

THis is why these lawsuits exist and I wonder if Sal will be apart of it.

 

Love you Sal, I hope the Devils can do something to honor your couple of years as a Captain. 

 

I mean, from what I can tell, he never really said anything to the Devils' staff, and he evidently passed whatever would be the concussion protocol.  When he told Lou what was going on, Lou told him to take as much time as he needed, he eventually made a full recovery, and had a pretty good season in 2011-2012.

 

But even if you're right, your post does bring up an interesting issue.  That is, let's say the Devils knew Salvador had a concussion, downplayed it, and continued to allow him to play to the detriment of his health.  At the same time, he earned something close to $9 million that he wouldn't have otherwise.  People who are paralyzed as a result of others culpability often get less than that. 

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Great read, and amazing perseverance shown by Sal to make it back after that cochlear concussion. Really glad he's sticking around to be a part of the organization. Congrats on a great career and enjoy retirement Sal! Thanks for everything!

Edited by MadDog2020
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A few instant reactions from me: 

 

Now that I am reading this, I feel terrible for Sal. The guy tried so hard. It puts those a$$holes into perspective who were booing him. 

 

At the same time, what the fvck were the Devils doctors doing, letting him back out there? Also, with Lou and Peter, they are just as culpable in this craziness. Lou gave him THREE YEARS as a thank you, we all knew that, but jesus - this was a mess. This guy had serious problems. 

 

THis is why these lawsuits exist and I wonder if Sal will be apart of it.

 

Love you Sal, I hope the Devils can do something to honor your couple of years as a Captain. 

 

Yet people wonder why they let go of the team's long-time orthopedist last week.  Never thought too highly of the Devils team doctors from what I have heard of over the years.

 

Also the people booing Sal (especially the ones to his face at a fan event), that's typical for a decent sized segment of our fanbase unfortunately.  I don't think it took too much thinking to see he was playing through injuries the past 3-5 years, yet people still slighted him for it.

 

One of the nicest players I have ever met in person was Sal.  Great person and I hope he sticks around either on the staff or as one of the Alumni.

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Yet people wonder why they let go of the team's long-time orthopedist last week. Never thought too highly of the Devils team doctors from what I have heard of over the years.

Also the people booing Sal (especially the ones to his face at a fan event), that's typical for a decent sized segment of our fanbase unfortunately. I don't think it took too much thinking to see he was playing through injuries the past 3-5 years, yet people still slighted him for it.

One of the nicest players I have ever met in person was Sal. Great person and I hope he sticks around either on the staff or as one of the Alumni.

The sad thing is the same a$$holes who booed him to his face will probably come up to him at alumni/fan events in the future and try to shake his hand and get a picture or an autograph and tell him what huge fans they are. Frauds. Edited by MadDog2020
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It really goes along way to explaining what went on. A very touching piece.

You can see now why he performed so well in 2012, that was pure desire. I must admit I was one of the people that wondered what made him a good captain and why he was picked.

Well now we know.

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This is why I am fine with players not having twitter. The team shouldn't be too worried about the players, but just the hate fans spew at them. If Salvador had an active account, fans would be a$$holes behind their computers. Happy, he may not have known how much hatred was directed at him.

 

Solid Devil for a number of years, before the new contract. Seemed like one of the nicest guys in the sport, and that's why it always bugged me how mean fans could be. Lou Lamoriello has a saying that you have separate the person from the player, but from this article, you can see why it was so hard for Lou to do that with Salvador after everything he went through and the '12 season.

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This is why I am fine with players not having twitter. The team shouldn't be too worried about the players, but just the hate fans spew at them. If Salvador had an active account, fans would be a$$holes behind their computers. Happy, he may not have known how much hatred was directed at him.

 

Solid Devil for a number of years, before the new contract. Seemed like one of the nicest guys in the sport, and that's why it always bugged me how mean fans could be. Lou Lamoriello has a saying that you have separate the person from the player, but from this article, you can see why it was so hard for Lou to do that with Salvador after everything he went through and the '12 season.

 

I remember reading a while back about how Leafs fans were attacking Reimer's wife on Twitter. Fans can be the absolute worst sometimes. 

 

Good luck to you Bryce. A lot of fans in NJ still love you and the time you put in here.

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the booing was unacceptable - of course. of course. and yes, i was thinking to go into Louis CK "but maybe."

 

here's the thing - you read the article and the pre-Cup run stuff you can say, "now I get it." but the issues come AFTER the cup run when it comes to Sal and how fans viewed him. now knowing just how hurt he was, the 3 year contract was a terrible idea from Lou. I mean, we all hated it the minute is was signed and it created a log jam of defensemen that conceivably affected Larsson's growth as well as other players not getting a shot and moved out.

 

last year, for the month that he played, the PK was historically bad and he was a main reason why. the year before, he was essentially done also.

 

this takes nothing away from the great person he is, "warrior", captain, leader. he was excellent in the SCF run.

 

TG brought up on twitter that lots of people put too much of the blame for the devils on sal. The truth is that since that SCF run, there's LOTS of blame to go around for the Devils play/record but in the end, one man shoulders more blame than any. And now he's in Toronto.

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I've felt the same way about Salvador for a while now.  Salvador the player was very tough to watch at times.  Salvador the person seems to be about as nice and wholesome a guy as you could possibly meet.  And it's scary what these guys put themselves through to get keep playing.  Sal basically put his life at risk for several years...for his sake, I wish he'd just left the game in 2012 (especially after reading about what brutal shape he was in), but it's gotta be really hard to do that when someone offers you $9.5 million over three seasons...and easy to think "Just let me get through three more seasons, and I won't ever have to worry about working again, I can stay home and take care of myself and my family, for life." 

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the booing was unacceptable - of course. of course. and yes, i was thinking to go into Louis CK "but maybe."

 

here's the thing - you read the article and the pre-Cup run stuff you can say, "now I get it." but the issues come AFTER the cup run when it comes to Sal and how fans viewed him. now knowing just how hurt he was, the 3 year contract was a terrible idea from Lou. I mean, we all hated it the minute is was signed and it created a log jam of defensemen that conceivably affected Larsson's growth as well as other players not getting a shot and moved out.

 

last year, for the month that he played, the PK was historically bad and he was a main reason why. the year before, he was essentially done also.

 

this takes nothing away from the great person he is, "warrior", captain, leader. he was excellent in the SCF run.

 

TG brought up on twitter that lots of people put too much of the blame for the devils on sal. The truth is that since that SCF run, there's LOTS of blame to go around for the Devils play/record but in the end, one man shoulders more blame than any. And now he's in Toronto.

 

We'll never know, but I suspect that the contract he got in 2012, had something to do with trying to convince Parise to stay. 

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Where does the piece ever say Sal was hurt with concussions post-2012? He got hurt late in 2009-10, it wasn't that uncommon to play through concussions before the protocol existed. He missed the entire season then after he got correctly diagnosed and recovered he came back and played 100+ games the next year. But this wasn't something he played through for years. He played through it for months then had to sit out a season.

Edited by NJDevs4978
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Where does the piece ever say Sal was hurt with concussions post-2012? He got hurt late in 2009-10, it wasn't that uncommon to play through concussions before the protocol existed. He missed the entire season then after he got correctly diagnosed and recovered he came back and played 100+ games the next year. But this wasn't something he played through for years. He played through it for months then had to sit out a season.

 

When reading stories like the ones he related, you gotta wonder if it's worth continuing to play, if there's really a valid reason for risking your health.  That was some frightening stuff. 

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I've felt the same way about Salvador for a while now.  Salvador the player was very tough to watch at times.  Salvador the person seems to be about as nice and wholesome a guy as you could possibly meet.  And it's scary what these guys put themselves through to get keep playing.  Sal basically put his life at risk for several years...for his sake, I wish he'd just left the game in 2012 (especially after reading about what brutal shape he was in), but it's gotta be really hard to do that when someone offers you $9.5 million over three seasons...and easy to think "Just let me get through three more seasons, and I won't ever have to worry about working again, I can stay home and take care of myself and my family, for life." 

 

I don't think money had much to do with it - he's a family guy and I've seen multiple people on different message boards intimate they live near Bryce, which at least implies he isn't living in some palace.  The guy clearly loves the game of hockey, and you only get one shot at retirement - once you retire, you're done.  The fact that it took him until September to announce his retirement may have been to prepare this article for the Players Tribune, but it sounded earlier in the summer that he legitimately didn't know if he was going to call it quits.  And that's after missing most of the last 2 seasons with injuries.  Some guys play until they pull the jersey off of you and that was Bryce Salvador.

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I don't think money had much to do with it - he's a family guy and I've seen multiple people on different message boards intimate they live near Bryce, which at least implies he isn't living in some palace.  The guy clearly loves the game of hockey, and you only get one shot at retirement - once you retire, you're done.  The fact that it took him until September to announce his retirement may have been to prepare this article for the Players Tribune, but it sounded earlier in the summer that he legitimately didn't know if he was going to call it quits.  And that's after missing most of the last 2 seasons with injuries.  Some guys play until they pull the jersey off of you and that was Bryce Salvador.

 

All very true...and he did come off a 4-year, $11.6 million deal when he signed the 3-year $9.5 million final contract, so he probably wasn't hurting for money.  Anyway, wasn't trying to imply that his only motivation for continuing to play was money...yeah, the guy clearly loves the game, and after 2012 both he and Lou thought that there was more left in the tank...but as had been an issue before, health wasn't always on Bryce's side.   

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976
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This is one thing that I've always felt a little odd about during Lou's reign.  It always seemed like concussions were not a real injury.  Why was Clowe constantly trotted out?  Same with Salvador?  I feel like the team was a little too "old school" in this respect where a concussion would be cured with some smelling salts and a kick in the butt.

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This is one thing that I've always felt a little odd about during Lou's reign.  It always seemed like concussions were not a real injury.  Why was Clowe constantly trotted out?  Same with Salvador?  I feel like the team was a little too "old school" in this respect where a concussion would be cured with some smelling salts and a kick in the butt.

 

Err, since there was a concussion protocol, I don't think Lou ever hid the fact that certain players, especially players like Clowe, had concussions.  I mean, the official note might have been "upper body injury," but when asked he would plainly acknowledge that certain players had concussions.  And in the case of Salvador, it appeared that it wasn't even a concussion that kept him out so long. 

Edited by Daniel
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Err, since there was a concussion protocol, I don't think Lou ever hid the fact that certain players, especially players like Clowe, had concussions.  I mean, the official note might have been "upper body injury," but when asked he would plainly acknowledge that certain players had concussions.  And in the case of Salvador, it appeared that it wasn't even a concussion that kept him out so long. 

 

I don't remember Lou admitting that Salvador had an inner-ear concussion until the end of the season that he had it (I think it was 2010-11).

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A few instant reactions from me: 

 

Now that I am reading this, I feel terrible for Sal. The guy tried so hard. It puts those a$$holes into perspective who were booing him. 

 

At the same time, what the fvck were the Devils doctors doing, letting him back out there? Also, with Lou and Peter, they are just as culpable in this craziness. Lou gave him THREE YEARS as a thank you, we all knew that, but jesus - this was a mess. This guy had serious problems. 

 

THis is why these lawsuits exist and I wonder if Sal will be apart of it.

 

Love you Sal, I hope the Devils can do something to honor your couple of years as a Captain. 

 

 

I feel like we as fans overreact sometimes. We really don't know what's going on. Unless you are there as a teammate, personnel or even reporter, you don't know. After reading Salvador's post, it was bone chilling. I made sure to include part of the Players Tribune in my retirement post. Lou Lamoriello deserves a medal. Kudos to Salvador for persevering. Many would have given up. He got better by sticking with it and delivered a heroic performance. 

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