Wow, NFL great Junior Seau dead?

Discussion in 'Odds & Ends' started by volleygirl, May 2, 2012.

  1. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

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    Reports are he has committed suicide. Sorry to hear this as he was a class act as a player and will definitely make the Hall of Fame. Best wishes to his family.
     
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  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Bummer for sure.
    I guess, when you're at the top, you can only go downwards.
     
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  3. JohnnyCracker

    JohnnyCracker Semi-Pro

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    I remember he was the guy who held back Ryan Leaf trying to calm him down when Leaf had that blowup with a reporter. Fast forward...Seau is the one committing suicide.
    Life...you just never know.
     
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  4. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hey guys....
    You ever get old?
    You know, that age thing. In NFL, "getting old" means losing the step and a half, seeing and knowing, but can't do much about it.
    EVERY player get's old. You USED to be able, now you're not.
    It's depressing. What's to look forwards to?
    Some look forwards to old age. Other's dread old age.
     
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  5. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

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    Has more to do with the head injuries these guys sustain than the whole 'missing the game' thing, though I'm sure that doesn't help. Dave Duerson was another one who killed himself last year, and they found severe brain damage afterwards. Reports are that Seau shot himself in the chest, so that his brain could be studied afterwards.

    The guy also went through a divorce.
     
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  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I doubt they miss the game.
    What they miss is the adrenaline high.
    Can't reproduce that unless you compete.
     
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  7. tricky

    tricky Hall of Fame

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    Depression is kind of the hidden epidemic among both football players and boxers. This is due to the accumulation of brain trauma throughout their career, as jamesblakefan pointed out.
     
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  8. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    The research on athlete suicide suggests it's not the loss of athletic ability, aderenaline high, or loss of attention/glory that impacts them. The risk factors that increase suicide generally among men -- divorce, alcohol abuse, lack of employment, chronic pain -- are all very prevalent among retired NFL players, who have a suicide rate six times that of the general population.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2012
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  9. r2473

    r2473 Legend

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    #9
  10. jaggy

    jaggy G.O.A.T.

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    Sad on so many levels
     
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  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Ollinger, please read what you wrote.
    WHY do so many NFL players choose suicide for their release?
    You list 3 big reasons, but chose to ignore it.
    Research knows nothing, you know that. It can be manipulated, facts hidden, and conclusions diverted by whoever, for whomever.
     
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  12. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    Lots of things CAN be manipulated, but it doesn't mean they are. Most research, especially research not involving pharmaceuticals, is reliable. It's been well known for an eternity that the factors that predict suicide include male gender (females make ineffectualy attempts, men use more lethal methods), increasing age, single or divorced, alcohol or drug abuse, lack of employment, and chronic pain. Data show at least two-thirds of former NFL players experience chronic pain of significant degree. The demographics alone here would account for a very high suicide rate. Also, aggressive men tend to use more lethal means, such as guns and ropes, and we know the NFL selects for aggressiveness.
     
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  13. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Then you have to explain why/how it was manipulated.
     
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  14. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Don't tennis player's compete? Why don't many of them commit suicide?
     
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  15. angharad

    angharad Semi-Pro

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    I have to wonder if there's a certain personality type that does well in professional sports that also increases risk of depression. One of the things Marcellus Wiley (ex-teammate and friend of Seau) said earlier today is that Seau never wanted people to see him at anything less than his best. He preferred to be treated by private physicians, not team doctors, so his injuries weren't common knowledge, that sort of thing. That preference for privacy and tendency to 'put on a brave face' would seem to lend itself to being depressed without seeking help, or considering suicide without talking to anyone about it.

    Seau always seemed like a decent guy, and I'm sorry this is what he saw as the only way out.
     
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  16. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    #16
  17. CCNM

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    It's always sad when someone commits suicide. I hope he is at peace. RIP Junior! :(
     
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  18. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I think poster 15 has something there.
    I also like Ollinger's thread about symptoms that might lead to suicide.
    I'd pretty well fit in there. Chronic pain, no gainful employment, downward spiral, the ways and means (shot IPSC and PracticalPistol for years), was a pyromaniac in my younger years, and generally getting old, but not looking forward to it.
     
    #18
  19. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

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    This is sad but not surprising.

    Junior Seau tried to commit suicide less than 2 years ago by driving his SUV off about a 30' cliff onto the beach. Luckily no one was on the beach where he landed. A girlfriend had charged him with domestic violence.

    He was still a legend in the San Diego area. RIP
     
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  20. tricky

    tricky Hall of Fame

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    #20
  21. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    No job, no wifey, plenty of booze to mask the pain. Suicide, nah, sign me up. Get busy living
     
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  22. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    Wow

    In 1998, LB Doug Miller was struck by lightning while camping in Colorado. CPR was being performed on Miller when he was struck again by a second bolt.



    Thursday, July 23, 1998 Last modified at 1:35 a.m. on Thursday, July 23, 1998

    Miller dies after being hit by lightning

    DOTSERO, Colo. (AP) - Doug Miller, a linebacker for the San Diego Chargers in the 1995 Super Bowl, was killed by lightning. He was 28.

    Miller was hit by lightning twice Tuesday night while camping on the Colorado River, according to Garfield County Sheriff Tom Delessandri.

    A friend, David Petterson, told deputies Miller was hit by a bolt of lightning and Petterson was "performing CPR on Miller when another lightning bolt hit Mr. Miller," Dalessandri said. Petterson said both bolts missed him.

    Miller played for South Dakota State before being drafted by San Diego in the seventh round in 1993.

    Miller played in the Blue Gray All-Star game. He had been working as a graduate assistant at California.
     
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  23. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    But is there any data to show that the highlit reasons don't lead to more divorce, alcohol abuse and emotional issues that would impact employability?

    It's all valid. Only the overly simplistic would ignore the very atypical lives that NFL retirees have lived, starting well before they ever played Pro ball.
     
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  24. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    ^^ If loss of attention and glory were important factors, we'd expect to see high suicide rates in former players from other sports as well, and we don't. The suicide rate for current and ex baseball players is quite low, according to data I saw some years ago. I can't offhand recall an ex tennis pro committing suicide. Former players from those sports don't have the high rate of chronic pain seen in football players, don't have as aggressive personality traits, and don't have the cognitive issues from recurrent head trauma.
     
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  25. Fearsome Forehand

    Fearsome Forehand Professional

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    Unlike tennis or baseball, football is a very violent game and those who are big, or big and fast, and also very good at physical violence excel at football. That propensity to be violent would seem to be as big a factor in the suicide rate of ex-football players as concussions.

    Do boxers have a statistically significant higher than average rate of suicide? They should have an ever higher rate of concussions in an even more violent sport. If the argument holds, they should have an even higher rate of suicide than football players.

    Don't dentists have a high rate of suicide? What is the cause? We could argue that an obsession with flossing leads to suicide.

    Do gun owners have a higher rate of suicide? Does criminality correlate with suicide rate? We are talking about the National Felon League after all. Most of these guys own weapons. And the rate of criminality in the NFL seems much higher than the societal average. I can see the concussions made me do it defense coming soon.

    Most people who commit suicide have never played football. Most people who have mental illness (suicidal depression) or otherwise have never played football.

    Seau had mental illness problems of some sort. He tried to drive his car off a cliff a few years back. That should have been everyone's first clue.

    If the stats indicate someone who has had one or more serious concussions is much more likely to commit suicide than someone who has not maybe there is a correlation.

    The NFL Players Union is angling for money and that is a lot of what is driving this argument. Concussions are a hazard of certain sports, just like knee injuries are in other sports, or arm problems are in tennis. No one forces anyone to play a certain sport. It is an individual choice. You play, you pay.

    That said, the NFL should make sure they educate players as to the risks of injury, financial management, etc. Unfortunately, most of the players have been coddled all their lives due to their athletic abilities. They are taught that the normal rules don't apply to them and many seem dumber than rocks. Despite making huge sums for a number of years, something like 80% are broke within a few years of retirement. That is very telling.

    I would never advise a kid to play organized football unless he is huge, fast and violent as hell because the sport seems to select for those attributes. Tennis is a much better game IMHO.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2012
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  26. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

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    Did you see there are now over 1,500 former NFL players jumping on the bandwagon to sue the NFL? These guys act like they had no idea it was a dangerous sport to go into. They got paid handsomely, blew all that money, and now want the NFL to pay them again? The NFL is gonna see a huge dropoff in popularity IMO because they are gonna legislate all the hits out of the game to protect themselves from these bogus lawsuits. All the rules are set up to protect the offensive players and to put up more points while the defensive players are expected to gently tackle a 6'7" TE going over the middle. Thats not what made the NFL king.
     
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  27. angharad

    angharad Semi-Pro

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    I agree that the lawsuit is bogus, but much of the knowledge we have about how dangerous the game is, particularly in brain trauma, has only come recently. I don't think the NFL ever tried to actively cover up the ramifications of concussions, but there was true ignorance throughout the league and the medical community as to what constituted concussion and what the long-term effects of concussion could be.

    As a side note, many of the early NFL players (pre-1980s strike) were not paid all that handsomely nor were they taken care of the way more modern players were. Hell, many players today aren't making millions.
     
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  28. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

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    You forget about the journeymen players that don't get multi million dollar contracts and are left debilitated after their careers with relatively little pension from the NFL. What the NFL gives guys in retirement benefits is peanuts compared to the revenue the league makes.

    http://www.askmen.com/sports/business_100/109_sports_business.html#ixzz1tpjXidFf
     
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  29. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    I think the issue with the lawsuit is that they are claiming the NFL had knowledge of these issues and didnt not present it to the players union in an attempt to not have to act on it.

    They will all agree that the game is dangerous. And its possible some people will not risk the effects.

    But I think most teenagers young 20's types will take the chance.
     
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  30. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

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    I cant believe that "steroids and HGH" arent being talked about more as a problem in the NFL. With 8 players off that 1994 SD Chargers super bowl team already dead at such young ages, its ridiculous that they are closing their eyes to the performance enhancing drug problem in the NFL. With Goddell continually talking about "player safety," i dont think theres one thing that could improve players safety more than drug testing to get the cheating players out of the league so the athletes are on level playing fields. Protect the players by getting the roiders out.
     
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  31. maverick66

    maverick66 Hall of Fame

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    Most of them had substance abuse issues more related to pain killers than performance enhancers. Also blaming roids for this doesnt work at all. Seau had mental health issues that will probably slowly come to the public eye now.

    People shouldnt go on a crusade about something they have no knowledge about. I suggest you watch the documentary Bigger, Stronger, Faster about performance enhancers than decide if you really feel they are killing athletes.
     
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  32. onehandbh

    onehandbh Hall of Fame

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    His blitzes never surprised me, but I'm shocked to hear about his passing
     
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  33. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    Three things: Football players (unlike baseball and tennis) retire much, much earlier and therefore the retirement is more a drastic life interuption. Second, in the US they have a much bigger ego buildup in HS and college than baseball and tennis players do (therefore contributing to bigger let down). Cheerleaders at college baseball games and tennis matches? ummm, no.... Lastly, I would argue that football selects for a different calibre of individual, perhaps an individual much less equipped to deal with the issues discussed here than the average tennis player or baseball player, not that they are all thoughtful individuals. I agree about the selection for aggressiveness and head trauma.
     
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  34. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

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    I am not just talking about the Seau death, I am talking about the "safety" of the players and the possible side effects these drugs have on them years after they have stopped playing. . The size and speed of many of the players is enhanced by performance enhancing drugs and if you dont believe that, then you are as blind as the people running baseball were when they acted like they didnt know over half their players were cheating.
     
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  35. maverick66

    maverick66 Hall of Fame

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    I was gonna type out a long post about why I think you are wrong but this isnt the thread for it.
     
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  36. tricky

    tricky Hall of Fame

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    Maverick66 is right. I'm not advocating PEDs, but there's a lot of misconceptions about it. It's nothing like addiction to painkillers, which is perhaps a worse problem in the NHL.
     
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  37. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

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    So a sport like baseball had a HUGE problem with PEDs but a sport like football where size and speed enhancement would help even more doesnt have any problem at all? Amazing if you believe that.
     
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  38. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    I get it, maybe a little too soon. But I get it

    Plus in baseball there are more ways to stay involved in the game. Every team had at least minor league affilites and if you wanted to go down the coaching or scouting roads they are there.

    Most football players do not get to end thier career on thier own terms. They show up to camp and get told they are cut and some guy is taking over.

    In the NFL you can get suspended for 4 games in a season and win the defensive player of the year award in that same year. They dont care about PEDs until the public makes it an issue. But the NFL has the common fans so into the hard hits and galiator type stuff nobody seems to mind.

    Players can get suspended for a game for a illegal hard hit but then the NFL will include that hit in an end of year hard hits video you can purchase.
     
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  39. maverick66

    maverick66 Hall of Fame

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    We know they take stuff but that isnt why they are having suicide rates through the roof.

    There isnt much link to PEDS and suicide if there was track and field athletes would be dropping dead left and right. Tennis players, Soccer players, cyclists, basketball,hockey, and just about every other sport would be dropping dead left and right. They all take them its just a fact of life now. So yes other things are what is causing football players issues.
     
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  40. tricky

    tricky Hall of Fame

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    Maverick is discussing causal link between PEDs and extreme depression. It's just not very strong. Addiction to painkillers? Very, very strong.
     
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  41. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    I thnk volley girl is saying the use of PEDS in a sport like football is what is causing more of this Head Trauma that give poeple pleple in theier 30s the brains of 80 year olds. I think they said dave duerson had early onset demtia and that typically doesnt occur until someone is way past the age he was at. Letting a 275lb guy run 4.4s into another 250lb guy running a 4.3 is alot difernt than Art donovan arm tackling an rb in 1957. Donovan has bad knees but his head is still pretty sharp.


    Agreed. But the PEDS lead to more pain being inflicted IMO.
     
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  42. maverick66

    maverick66 Hall of Fame

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    i agree the game got much faster and alot more violent on the head on collisions. you dont have enough money to get me to return kickoffs. However that isnt the PEDS doing that. Thats the sport and the general athletes being trained better and just being more athletic.

    Maybe. But it also aids in recovering from that injury alot faster. HGH is a very good tool for getting the players back on the field.
     
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  43. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    But they guys use them to heal beyond natural means
     
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  44. Fearsome Forehand

    Fearsome Forehand Professional

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    The concussion thing has been a problem in football for a long time. I am aware of a couple of cases of players who played their football is the 1950's and 1960's who both had frontal lobe damage similar to what boxers suffer. Both former Baltimore Colts, John Mackey (Tight End out of Syracuse) and Don Schinnik (Linebacker out of UCLA.) Schinnik played about 13 years in the NFL, Mackey about 10. Mackey was also the head of the players union for a number of years.

    I recall an interview with an old time player who suggested getting rid of facemasks as a means of reducing head injuries. He maintained that most players aren't going to use their heads to make hits if they have no mask.

    The list of boxers who have suffered the effects of too many head shots is very long. Some end up as badly as Mackey and Schinnik. Jerry Quarry and his brother Mike both ended up like that. Clay/Ali also seems to have suffered the effects. Jimmy Ellis is not all there anymore. Some boxers seem impervious to the punishment. George Chuvalo took a lot of head shots and he is still very together mentally as is Ron Lyle among others. Ken Norton was in a coma for years after a terrible car crash. (He drove off a ramp on the SD Freeway so he is in pretty bad shape.)

    The NFL is going to have to address the issue as the lawsuits roll in. I think Seau probably had other issues but no one would argue that getting hit in the head repeatedly is good for one's faculties.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
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  45. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Don't seem to heal those brain cells
     
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  46. tricky

    tricky Hall of Fame

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    Fair point. I definitely agree. Nothing like going to a NFL game and seeing the game at floor level. TV doesn't convey the violence of the collisions.
     
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  47. Avles

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    #47
  48. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    When I ran the dementia research ward at Mt. Sinai in NYC a prominent former middleweight (he lost a very tough bout to Sugar Ray Robinson) was refered to us for assessment. Probably had traumatic encephalopathy ("dementia pugilistica" as it's known), problem was that when a fire drill alarm bell went off as it did at least once a day, he'd jump out of his chair thinking it was the start of a round. It would take a minute or two to calm him down.
     
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  49. r2473

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  50. krz

    krz Professional

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    Great! More ammo for a ridiculous lawsuit for a bunch of guys who can't manage their finances.
     
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