Derek Boogaard concussion: Did season-ending injury play a role in enforcer's untimely death?

Derek Boogaard concussion: Did season-ending injury play a role in enforcer's untimely death?

It may take weeks to determine the cause of Derek Boogaard's death at the age of 28, but some are already questioning whether the season-ending concussion he suffered in a December 9, 2010 fight with Matt Carkner of the Ottawa Senators may have played a role.

In the 70th fight of his career, Boogaard suffered a serious concussion that ended his season. He said it was like nothing he had ever felt before, and it resulted in him having to wear sunglasses for weeks outdoors when he left his Minneapolis condo, where Derek Boogaard was found dead Friday by his brothers Ryan and Aaron.
There has been a lot of discussion lately surrounding concussions in the NFL, including this GQ article focusing the tragic mental decline of ex-Viking Fred McNeill:

Another former football player gone mad. This has been the story of the NFL, an $8 billion industry, over the past few years: players going crazy from concussions and head trauma sustained during their playing days. Crazy enough to kill themselves. One swallowed antifreeze, another shot himself, still another fled in a paranoid frenzy from police and crashed his car into an oncoming tanker. The tales have been tragic and dramatic, and the science, finally, has become undeniable.

In March, Bob Probert became the first hockey player whose brain showed the same symptoms as NFL players with long-term brain injuries.

Boogaard may have been suffering from Post-Concussion Syndrome which can have a variety of mood-altering side effects:

Psychological symptoms, which are present in about half of people with PCS, may include irritability, anxiety, depression, and a change in personality. Other emotional and behavioral symptoms include restlessness, aggression, mood swings, anger, decreased libido, impulsiveness, loss of social judgment, and lack of ability to tolerate stress or alcohol. People with PCS may also display a lack of emotion, emotional lability, or mood swings. Another common symptom--apathy, or lack of motivation--may result directly from the syndrome or be secondary to depression.

As you can see in the video below, Boogaard is shaken up by the fight and immediately heads to the locker room for medical attention.

Continuing Coverage


The Boogeyman Drops the Gloves: Profile of the Wild Enforcer


The Boogeyman Unfiltered: The Q & A with Derek Boogaard


RIP Derek Boogaard: Obituary


Did season-ending concussion play a role in Boogaard's untimely death?


Boogaard's brain donated to Sports Legacy Institute


Boogaard suffered from substance addiction

Sponsor Content


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >