NEW YORK — The National Hockey League has spoken out against a lawsuit filed by nine former players that alleges the league intentionally promoted violence for the profit of the sport while ignoring the risks to players.
“That’s just bullshit,” said deputy commissioner Bill Daly while shoving reporters out of his way. “Hockey is a fast-paced, full contact sport. If these pussies were worried about breaking a nail every once and a while, maybe they should have gone into figure skating instead.”
The lawsuit asserts that the N.H.L. knowingly puts players into a situation where head trauma is likely, and that they fail to adequately inform players of the risks they face. Furthermore, the players claim that the pension and health insurance they receive after their careers end is insufficient.
Head trauma has been linked to headaches, anxiety, depression, and a myriad of other health concerns.
Experts agree that the plaintiffs are likely hoping for a settlement similar to the proposed $765 million deal between the N.F.L. and former players. This is an outcome the N.H.L.’s lawyers are eager to avoid, even if it means “pulverizing the players’ argument with brute force.”
“If these crybabies want a settlement I got their settlement right here,” Daly shouted at reporters last Friday while flexing his biceps.
Lawyers for the players argue that the culture of violence within the N.H.L. is evident in the way the league has handled the case thus far, pointing to an incident during deposition, in which Bluto Kearns, lawyer for the league, leaned across the table to shove his open hand into Dan Keczmer’s face. Kearns was quoted as saying, “If you want to settle so bad why don’t we go outside and settle this like men?”
The players believe they have a strong case. However, the league vehemently denies claims that it encourages violence in the sport, and it doesn’t appear willing to back down without a fight.
Daly made no bones last Friday, telling reporters, .“These players coming to us and demanding money because of a couple of headaches are like the stars of ‘Disney on Ice’ suing Mickey Mouse because spinning around made them dizzy. Bull. Shit. Trust me when I say we are happy to defend ourselves at trial. If it’s a fight these cupcakes want, then a fight they will get.”