posted Jan05, 2014
As we fondly remember
former player Don Sanderson, it is hard to believe where 5
years have gone since his passing. Upon watching
the TSN report on that fatal hockey fight, it was truly
amazing to see what a fine and thoughtful man Corey Fulton has
become. Not surprising to us, was the compassion of
Don's mom Dahna Sanderson which she so generously
conveyed to Corey as he struggled with this tremendous
burden. We know Don would have been immensely proud of
Glenn Ulrich, President
Cory Fulton Story
Reserve July 10 for a day of fun ... from the
Donald Sanderson Memorial Trust Fund
posted Apr, 2012
Please join us and help us to spread the word
Head Injury Prevention and Concussion
in Team Sports
Saturday April 28th,
ThinkFirst Canada Pensez d?Abord
Canada and our
Invite you to join us for a free
Dr. Charles Tator - ThinkFirst Canada
We request the pleasure of your
company at the 2012 Lectureship
Ceremonies Dave Randorf
Featuring a Keynote Address by Mr. Matt
Injury Prevention and Concussion in Team
399 Bathurst Street, Toronto, Ontario,
Saturday April 28th,
10:00 a.m. - 2:00
Registration: 9:30 ?
Featuring a Workshop and Panel
Dr. Shelina Babul
& Dr. Alison Macpherson
- "Who is at Risk? What can we do to prevent
and reduce injuries?"
Dr. Paul Dennis
- "Peer Influence and
Donations are welcome in continued
support of the
Lectureship and Program Development Fund
For more information on Lectureship 2012 Speaker
Please reserve your
seat and RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
750 Dundas Street West
Toronto, ON, Canada
Today is the present... value the GIFT
Date to join us Tuesday JULY
10, 2012 ... 4th Annual Donald Sanderson
Golf Tournament! Ask me for
Donald Sanderson Memorial Trust Fund --
Hello friends and family!
Thank you for your support of the Donald Sanderson Memorial Trust Fund in 2010.
2010 was a year full of activity for Fund and all our friends.
January 2 ? the first annual Skate to Remember in memory of Donald at Scugog Arena
in Port Perry. Thanks to the huge group who joined in for a celebration and a very
successful food drive.
You?re all invited to join us to start 2011 on the ice Jan. 2, 2011 at 9:30 pm for an
hour - Skate to Remember and Food Drive.
RSVP to email@example.com so we know to expect you.
Please bring a non-perishable food item with you.
June 2010 -- the first OHA Donald Sanderson Award and bursary was presented
at the annual OHA awards event at the Hockey Hall of fame.
Thanks so much to the OHA -- www.ohahockey.org -- for establishing this award
in memory of Donald and to help other young players in their future education.
Congratulations to Cody Loeffen ? Port Colborne Pirates
Think First Canada -- Dahna Sanderson accepted invitation to be on Board of
Directors for Think First Canada. ThinkFirst is a national non-profit organization dedicated to the
prevention of brain and spinal cord injuries. www.thinkfirst.ca
The 2nd annual gift to RH Cornish Publish School in the name of the Principal?s Award for
Student Leadership was awarded. Donald was the first recipient of this award in
Congratulations to Callen Hageman, the 2010 grade graduating class recipient.
A monetary gift is given to the school honoring the recipient of this annual award.
This young leader is to work with the school to identify how the monetary gift is to be
used to enhance the school community at RH Cornish.
July 14 ? the 2nd annual fundraising golf tournament at Royal Ashburn in Whitby.
Thanks for all golfers, sponsors, supports, friends, family and volunteers for a beautiful
Mark your calendar for July 14, 2011 for the 3rd annual event.
Let us know your interest with an email to reserve your place on the course.
Send email to donaldsmtf.@gmail.com
Stay tuned for more information coming soon ? it?s our major fundraising activity of
the year and we look forward to having you and your friends join us. 2011 will bring
a lower registration fee with other modifications to the program thanks to your feedback.
August 31 ? York University Symposium on Sport Concussion was held.
We are pleased to be the key sponsor to bring this event to athletes, sports trainers,
coaches, and more. Spread education and information about concussions to help in the
prevention is an ongoing goal of the DSMTF. Thanks to all involved in this successful
and informative event. We?ve started initial conversations to set up a web site for the
fund and are looking forward to having this project in place within 2011. Stay tuned.
November 5 ? the 2nd annual Tomorrow?s Leader scholarship award was presented
during Port Perry High School?s Commencement ceremony.
Congratulations to Heather Shearer, the class of 2010 recipient of this award. And,
Stephen Humphrey, the class of 2009, recipient.
Your ongoing support is greatly appreciated and your financial contributions during the
year and at our annual fundraising event help immensely to make the awards possible as
well as gives us the ability to support events like conducted at York U this summer.
Wishing you a special 2011 that brings you a year full of life, love and laughter.
Warmest regards ,
Live, Love, LaughToday is the present... value the GIFT every day!
posted Aug. 22,2010
York University community was saddened when our student Donald
Sanderson tragically died from injury sustained from a concussion
during a hockey game. Donald fell during a fight, hit his head and went
into a coma until he died a few weeks later.
family is helping the School of Kinesiology & Health Science share
important knowledge about concussion management with you and the
community. We believe in keeping more people healthier, longer through
education and invite you to attend a symposium on this vital topic.
complete text can be found at http://www.yorku.ca/health/events/?Event=19734
JULY 14, 2010 ... 2nd Annual Donald Sanderson Golf Tournament!
posted Mar 22, 2010
sending you this note to invite you to be part of a very important
event in my life. The annual Donald Sanderson Celebrity Golf
Tournament, honouring my son's memory and focused on raising funds for
the memorial fund in his name.
first Donald Sanderson tournament in 2009 was an amazing success... we
hope you will join us for this year's event. It will be a great day and
your participation will support worthy causes that represent and
support the legacy left by a young leader.
participation is welcome however you are able. We are seeking Sponsors,
golfers, volunteers, prizes, silent action items and more. All the details are on the attached brochure.
is an earlybird registration draw for all who register to golf by May
15. We have a limited number of spots for golfers (144 total) so please
spread the word and act fast to reserve your place. We have had a
number of requests to reserve places so we know spots will fill up
tournament all Golfers have a signing 'bonus' of gifts valued at $120
or more. Lunch will be provided before the Shot gun start at 1pm;
dinner following a day of golf; a silent auction; and for those who
love some friendly poker the evening will cap off with some fun with
2010 tournament the list of celebrities is growing. From the NHL Alumni
here are just a few personalities who will be joining us...Dave Reid,
Ron Tugnutt, Steve Larmer, Curtis Foster and Kris King.
forward to hearing from you and please spread the word to your friends,
family and assoicates. Thanks for letting me know how you would like to
Dahna Sanderson Tel: 905-868-4382
Live, Love, Laugh Today is the present... value the GIFT every day!
Please join us ... JULY 14, 2010 ... 2nd Annual Donald Sanderson Golf Tournament!
Sanderson Memorial Trust Fund
c/o Dahna Sanderson
104-11 Oneida Cres
Richmond Hill, ON L4B 0A1
Home Opener (Sept 25, 2009)
Pictures posted Oct 15, 2009
HOME OPENER - DON SANDERSON CEREMONY
At the Home
Opener, Sept. 25th. 2009, Don Sanderson's #3 Jersey was
retired in a ceremony attended to by Don's Mom - Dahna
Sanderson, his Uncle - Dave Jackson, and his Grand Parents -
Mr. & Mrs. Don Jackson, along with many of our Alumni that
played with Don in the 2007-2008 campaign, and Brent Ladds -
President of the OHA.
Additional pictures of the Home Opener and Don below.
THANK-YOU LETTER FROM DAHNA SANDERSON
September 26, 2009
Jr. C Hockey Club
C/o 227 Boyers Road
Keswick, ON L4P 3C8
Attention: Glenn Ulrich, President
wanted to express our sincerest appreciation to you and your
organization for the special sweater retirement ceremony in my son?s
honour at your home opener on Friday September 25, 2009. The fact that
you were playing Port Perry, the town in which he grew up and loved to
be a part of seemed quite appropriate as well.
loved every moment he was with your organization. It was a very happy
time in his hockey career as he was able to be part of the 2007-2008
winning season as the COJHL champs. I will always remember that final
game when they won and seeing him have a chance to along with his
teammates, as he said to me, raise ?his cup?, in victory on the ice and
celebrate. It is very special that he will always have a place with The
Ice as you have retired his #3 officially; the banner in his honour is
a gesture appreciated beyond anything any words can express.
behalf of all Donald?s family and loving friends, please express our
overwhelming gratitude to the players, volunteers, sponsors, staff and
everyone who makes up The Ice team. Congratulations on the win
over Port Perry on Friday; all the best for a success, safe and happy
Donald?s memory always have a place within your hearts. We wish for you
to embrace your life, not just your sport, with the same uninhibited
passion Donald did for his short 21 years with us.
Live, Love and Laugh!
--While it seems a long way off, I want to be sure that you do save the
date of July 14, 2010 in your calendar to be part of the 2nd annual Don Sanderson Celebrity Cup Golf Tournament. We will be having it again at The Royal Ashburn in Whitby.
ThankYou Letter from Dahna Sanderson (PDF) (WORD)
Brent Ladds (President OHA) and Dahna Sanderson
Corey Skene (Port), Mayor Grossi, Dahna Sanderson, George Slinko (ICE)
Dahna Sanderson and Georgina Ice President Glenn Ulrich
Captains and Alternates
Mr. & Mrs. Don Jackson, Dahna Sanderson, Dave Jackson
us, Don Sanderson was a Hockey Player, a Team-mate and a Friend. To
many others his name as become synonymous with an outpouring of emotion
for change throughout the hockey world. Many people have varied opinions
on the issue of fighting in today's game.
I do not intend to express an opinion on
such but yet prefer to use this medium to help convey any
information pertaining to Don. Today, I was sent a
copy of an interview with Michael Sanderson (Don's Father) in
MacLean's Magazine. I feel it is only fitting to post it
to our website in Don's Memory, to help keep our local fans and
friends of Don's informed. Please see the " Reflections of Don Sanderson
" section of
our website, to read the interview with Michael
thoughts and prayers go out to Michael and Dahna and their
families, as they try to make sense of such a horrible
GEORGINA ICE HOCKEY CLUB
Sanderson Celebrity Cup Golf Tournament,
to be held on Don?s
birthday, July 14th (tues) at
the Royal Ashburn Golf Club in Ashburn, Ontario.
Here for Brochure
and Registration form
In honor of my son's memory many of his wonderful colleagues
and sports family have pulled together to launch the Don Sanderson
The goal is for this to become an annual
tournament with net proceeds to the Donald Sanderson Memorial Fund.
Sponsors, golfers, volunteers, prizes...you can participate
however you are able. The attached brochure will give you some more
details on this event.
All Golfers have a signing 'bonus' of
gifts valued at $120 or more.
We have a limited number of spots for
golfers so please spread the word and act fast to reserve your place.
Please note that single golfers are $250 per person.
of NHL players past and present is growing!
to hearing from you with any feedback, questions and
Donald loved to golf and this event is being
launched on July 14, his 22nd birthday. He's always been one to enjoy a
great party... looks like it could be an amazing
Dahna Dahna SandersonTel:
Today is the
present... value the GIFT every day
INTERVIEW with MICHAEL SANDERSON
Full article by Charlie Gillis/Maclean's is found HERE
You?ll never get rid of it entirely.? Michael Sanderson
spoke those words to practically anyone who would listen in the days
following his son Donald?s death. And in a nation suffering no small
amount of guilt over a senseless loss, they were received as absolution.
In the depths of his grief, this man got it, the self-styled purists said.
He?s played the sport. He knows fighting is embedded in it. He won?t use
the death of his 21-year-old son?by universal account about the best kid
you could ever meet?as a pulpit to rail against that which sets the game
apart. ?Other people won?t understand this,? Don Cherry told his
coast-to-coast audience after attending Donald Sanderson?s memorial
service in Port Perry, Ont. ?But Mike is a hockey
Yet on this subject,
more so than any other, we Canadians don?t listen closely. Or we hear only
what we want to. So if you?ve been gathering your information on this
slow-moving controversy from Coach?s Corner, it may surprise you to learn
that Michael Sanderson would in fact love to see fighting eliminated from
the game. You may be shocked to hear he supports measures that would
suffocate the practice. Automatic ejections? ?Helluva rule.? Requiring
players to keep their helmets and visors on during fights? ?Great. If they
know they?re going to be punching plastic with their bare hands, they?ll
As for that stuff
about ?never getting rid of it,? well, the pro-fighting advocates appear
to have missed Sanderson?s point entirely. It?s part and parcel of his
argument that throwing players out of games and fining them would limit
fighting to blue-moon incidents, which can then be severely sanctioned. He
cites football, baseball and basketball as sports whose ejection rules
have made fighting look ?frigging ridiculous.? ?They have a fight every
once in a while,? he says. ?I mean, it?s going to happen. But mostly guys
just don?t bother.? Oh, and one more thing: he?s no friend of Don Cherry,
with whom he says he has ?issues.? ?He said we sat there like we were
buddies [at Donald?s funeral],? Sanderson says tightly. ?I?m, like, no we
Not buddies, not fellow travellers, not allies in a
rearguard action against the bleeding hearts. If truth be known Michael
Sanderson shares the view of a growing number of Canadians who sensed the
ground tilting after the Jan. 2 death of Donald Sanderson, whose head
struck the ice after his helmet came off during a fight. Don was no
household name: he played for fun with a senior-level team in
, Ont., between classes at
. But for anyone who has
talked hockey over a tray of cheap draft, it was a whispered fear come
true. Someday, someone?s going to get killed, we warned ourselves. And now
that someone had, it seemed hypocritical not to act. In the days following
Sanderson?s death, six out of 10 respondents told a Leger/Sun Media poll
they favoured banning fighting from all amateur hockey. The Ontario Hockey
League, the province?s top junior circuit, meanwhile, banned players from
removing their helmets to fight.
Yet when the
discussion came around to the NHL?the last and most influential bastion to
keep fighting alive in the game?it ran up against the same old
immovability. Sure, a few progressive minds wondered aloud about whether
it?s time to discuss the issue (Colin Campbell, the NHL director of hockey
operations, promised to raise it next month at a meeting of general
managers; Ken Holland, the GM of the Detroit Red Wings, applauded). But by
?s peers held firm. Only two of 18
surveyed by TSN support stiffer punishment for fisticuffs, while the
league-wide response to
was best articulated by
?s Brian Burke. ?I think that will
be a very short discussion,? he said. ?I am not in favour of
The importance of this
resistance is obvious. More than mere professionals exercising their
freedom to engage in the occasional fist fight, NHL players are beacons
youngsters follow into the game. But rather than change, the players,
their bosses and the media commentators have circled themselves in dubious
arguments for the status quo. Fighting protects talented players from
cheap shots, they say. It serves as a release valve for emotions. The fans
love it, and so on. There are a host of reasons to question these
assumptions?starting with the quaint notion that fighting is the wrong way
to resolve our differences. But like Michael Sanderson?s true feelings,
they get drowned out by patriotic bluster. The time has come to shout a
That fighting is
embedded in the DNA of hockey is hard to dispute. It is said that the
first game played indoors under written rules ended in a fight, as players
scuffled with members of a
skating club who wanted to use the ice. That was 1875, and it followed
several accounts of outdoor hockey devolving into fist fights and
stick-swinging incidents in
came later?most notably the idea that a contact sport played at such high
speeds needed fighting as an outlet for anger. ?Nothing relaxes the boys
like a good fight,? said Francis ?King? Clancy, the legendary Toronto
Maple Leaf of the 1930s, in a flash of Irish bravura. Clarence Campbell,
the NHL?s long-time president, popularized the ?safety-valve? trope,
warning that, without fighting, ?the players would no doubt develop more
subtle forms of viciousness.?
These notions took
hold, and were allowed to calcify despite an abundance of contradictory
evidence. Study after study has demonstrated that violence leads only to
more violence, notes Stacy Lorenz, a
professor who has studied
the history of violence in hockey, while some of the most traumatic
moments in the game were either sparked by fighting, or occurred despite
its prevalence. Maurice Richard resorted to his fists again and again in
response to the slashes and ethnic slurs he endured as a Montreal
Canadien. Yet his combativeness did nothing to discourage?and arguably
spurred?the opponent who cut his face with a high stick, provoking the
epic meltdown that led to the Richard riot of 1955 (a wild-eyed Richard
broke his stick across the shoulder of his attacker, Hal Laycoe, and
punched a linesman in an attempt to get at the Boston
Meanwhile, the cheap
shots went on, reaching their apogee in the 1970s, when the Philadelphia
Flyers were the Broad Street Bullies and fighting was commonplace. The
league was forced to crack down on bench-clearing brawls. But pugilism
remained, and in today?s NHL, a perceived cheap shot can lead to endless
cycles of retribution, with players waiting several games to exact revenge
on an opponent they believe has taken liberties. The idea, says Rob Ray, a
former tough guy with the Buffalo Sabres, is to ensure talented players
aren?t injured by bigger, tougher opponents. ?You can use Wayne Gretzky as
an example,? says Ray, who now works as a TV analyst. ?He always had
somebody looking over his shoulder, protecting him, allowing him to play
the game the way he could.?
Trouble is, many cheap
shots are committed by practised fighters?no doubt because they are
unfazed by the thought of dropping the gloves should they need to.
Egregious examples include the forearm shiver Toronto?s designated
fighter, Tie Domi, laid during the 2001 playoffs on Scott Niedermayer, an
all-star defenceman then with the New Jersey Devils; or Dale Hunter?s
blindside elbow on Pierre Turgeon during a 1993 playoff game between the
Washington Capitals and Turgeon?s New York Islanders. A more recent spate
of attacks suggests the problem has deepened, as small-time pugilists take
liberties with players who don?t typically fight. In October 2007, Jesse
Boulerice, a dime-a-dozen fighter with the Flyers, levelled Ryan Kesler of
the Vancouver Canucks with a cross-check to the face. That play came just
two weeks after Steve Downie, another minor tough with the Flyers,
concussed the normally peaceable Dean McAmmond with a flying elbow,
putting the Ottawa Senator out of action for 10 games. This season, Ryan
Hollweg, a spare-part agitator with
, was suspended for three games
following his third misconduct in nine months for boarding?essentially,
hitting from behind. The Leafs forward has been branded a coward for those
hits. But he is no shirker in the fisticuffs department, fighting 19 times
in the two seasons leading up to his suspension.
So the theory that
fighting limits dirty play doesn?t hold water. Nor does the idea that it
protects ultra-talented players from the indignities of a rough game. In
the last couple of weeks, NHL fans have been treated to the spectacle of
superstars Sidney Crosby and Alexander Semin throwing punches after
opponents crossed the line (Semin, who can be seen on YouTube, looks
rather like an angry toddler). You can?t, evidently, have a thug riding
shotgun all the time.
Still, the pro-fight
lobby holds to its catechism, insisting the mischief would abate if
enforcers were given more latitude. Their latest target is the so-called
?instigator rule,? which they say emboldens cheap-shot artists by giving
extra penalty minutes to players who pick fights to even the score. That
would be a lot more persuasive if officials actually used the instigator
rule. Since it was introduced in 1992, the number of infractions has
steadily dwindled to about 50 per year, out of 1,230 games. Meantime,
fighting has been booming following a post-lockout low of 466 in 2005-?06.
At the current rate, 2008-?09 will end with 789 fights, or 0.64 fights per
game, according to the website Hockeyfights.com. It is possible, as the
foregoing numbers suggest, that 94 per cent of those fights will have been
started by no one. But it?s a lot more likely that the league is trapped
in a vicious cycle, where fighters are doing the cheap shots, the cheap
shots are leading to more fights, and the officials have given up trying
to stop them.
It is tempting under
the circumstances to throw up one?s hands. ?These are professionals, and
they are adults,? notes Dave Morissette, a former enforcer who now
provides NHL analysis on RDS in
. But even Morissette, who fought
relentlessly in the minors to get his shot at the NHL (11 games with
was shaken by the death of Sanderson?a player who like so many Canadian
boys grew up idolizing NHLers. For Morissette and for others, qualms about
fighting have always revolved around these younger players, whom he
believes should be protected from the fighting culture until they are
ready to turn professional. ?I think they should get it out of junior
hockey completely,? he says. ?Let those players play
are rooted in psychology?the kind learned by one who must prepare mentally
for a nightly maelstrom of fists. ?In my first year of junior, I wanted to
quit by Christmas,? he admits. ?You don?t sleep at night, because you?re
not thinking about hockey anymore. You?re just thinking about your fights.
You?re 16 or 17, there are 2,000 people at the arena. There?s your
teammates and your girlfriend and your dad in the stands and you really
don?t want to get your ass kicked. So are you thinking about scoring
goals? No. You?re thinking about that fight.?
The syndrome can carry
a player to frightening depths. Morissette made waves four years ago by
admitting in a book that he had taken steroids in order to match strength
against the muscle-bound giants entering the league. Today he wonders what
fury these behemoths will unload on their future victims. The same fears
were on Ken Holland?s mind when the Detroit GM weighed in on the debate.
?Some of these guys are six foot seven, six foot eight,? he told the Globe
and Mail. ?They weigh 245 or 250 lb. In the old days they were six foot
one, 185 lb.?
Indeed, the dangers
are plain to anyone who cares to look. Thirteen days after Sanderson?s
death, Daniel Carcillo, a young forward with the Phoenix Coyotes, thumped
his bare head against the ice in a fight with
Davison, who stands six foot three and weighs 220 lb. ?When I saw that,?
says Michael Sanderson, ?it sent a chill through me.? Carcillo escaped
serious injury, but the following week, a minor-league forward playing for
the Philadelphia Phantoms, the Flyers? American Hockey League affiliate,
suffered a seizure after falling helmetless into the boards during a
fight, his legs shaking uncontrollably and his eyes rolling back in his
head. He was kept overnight in hospital, but appeared to be
None of this appears to have fazed the NHL brain trust. ?I don?t
think there is any appetite to abolish fighting from the game,?
commissioner Gary Bettman told reporters this week during All-Star
. ?I think our fans enjoy this
aspect of the game.? Still, the league might take a harder look at
fighting?s effect on its product. Far from encouraging rugged play,
fighting and its concomitant urge for retribution have turned even clean
hits into violations of the NHL?s supposed ?code of honour.? A mid-ice hip
check that 10 years ago would have been considered part of the game now
induces a dreary round of shoving and scuffling. Star players who fans pay
dearly to see are pulling up on their checks so as to avoid these scenes,
while the Hollwegs and Downies roam around unchecked. A case can be made
that fighting is actually making the game less tough.
mentality has also led to blowout incidents that have bruised the game?s
reputation among prospective fans. Marty McSorly, after all, was trying to
goad Donald Brashear into a fight in February 2000 when he swung a stick
at the Vancouver Canuck?s head, resulting in a high-profile assault
prosecution. Todd Bertuzzi?s infamous attack on Steve Moore in 2004 was
payback for a hit on Markus Naslund, the Canucks captain, in a previous
game between Vancouver and the Colorado Avalanche. That
answered the proverbial bell by fighting with Matt Cooke made the attack
all the harder to fathom. If fights are any kind of safety valve, why do
these dramas drag on?
The league?s answer to
such questions is as familiar as it is blithe. ?We believe we?re
adequately and appropriately policing our own game,? Bettman said in the
wake of the Bertuzzi incident. What the commissioner fails to grasp is
that the rest of the world does not share its view of hockey as a
self-governing kingdom. ?Violence in sports is father to violence in
everyday life,? said Judge Sidney Harris of the
court in 1988, setting down a precept the justice system has upheld ever
since. The public appears to agree. In poll after poll, Canadians say they
look upon hockey as a means to teach values like respect, discipline and
grace under pressure. Fully 54 per cent of respondents to a Harris-Decima
survey conducted last week said they oppose fighting in the
Here lie the moral
contradictions the league cannot?will not?address. We teach our children
that punching another person is no way to resolve frustration. Why is it
thought reasonable in hockey? More to the point, is fighting not
antithetical to the concept of athletic competition? What are rules and
officials for, if not to prevent players from taking justice into their
own hands? Why should they serve this purpose in other contact sports but
not hockey? Football, to name just one, is a physical game, featuring
300-lb. men throwing themselves at each other at high speed. But head
shots, blocks in the back, pushing your hands into an opponent?s face are
deemed penalties. And if two players finally do lose their cool, the
referees don?t stand back while they remove their helmets and start
swinging. Perhaps Wayne Gretzky summed it up best: ?Hockey is that only
team sport in the world that actually encourages fighting. I have no idea
why we let it go on.?
It?s not as though
getting rid of it would be difficult. Automatic game ejections followed by
escalating fines and suspensions would likely do the trick?not eliminating
fisticuffs altogether but, as Sanderson says, making them ridiculous.
Minor hockey associations did it long ago, reducing fighting to a few
pathetic parodies in which players cuff each others? face cages, gloves
still on. As for the canard that old habits die hard, one need only
consider the NHL?s own example: by near-universal opinion, the league?s
crackdown on obstruction and stick offences has been a grand success. Like
clockwork, the lower leagues have fallen into line, taking their cues from
the pros and juniors. It was a clear demonstration, if any was needed,
that a few rule amendments and some perseverance on the part of officials
can change a sport for the good.
Sanderson, for one,
doubts the hockey would suffer one bit if fighting were gone. He points to
the Stanley Cup playoffs and world junior championship as series that
feature next to no fisticuffs, yet offer some of the game?s most punishing
physical play. ?It?s open, it?s fast, and the referees let them play,? he
says. ?We watch because it?s exciting. We don?t watch it for the fights.?
He?s been speaking these truths insistently but quietly, so as to avoid
heaping guilt on Cory Fulton, the
, Ont., player who was fighting
Don Sanderson when he went down. ?There?s another person to think about
here,? he says. ?Being a dad, and trying to be sensitive to both sides,
it?s hard to speak out.?
But make no mistake:
should Donald Sanderson?s death prove the turning point in this ancient
debate, that would be just fine with his father. ?At least we could say
something good came out of it,? Michael says. ?Right now, nothing?s good
for me. I don?t have my buddy. I can?t see him, I can?t talk to him.
There?s gotta be a reason for that. You can?t tell me the Lord took him
for nothing, because he was just too good of a kid.?
REFLECTIONS OF DON SANDERSON
It was with great
sadness that the Georgina Ice and the Whitby Dunlops, along with the
Hockey community in
lost Don Sanderson after a 3 week
battle in critical condition at
. Don had sustained a serious head
injury during a game between the Whitby Dunlops and Brantford Blast in
on Dec. 12, 2008. Although Don?s passing has
raised some questions about the use of helmets in the game
with speculations of what may result in the future, the ICE
would like to take this opportunity to reflect on what Don meant to our
hockey club, as well as his contributions to the game in general.
Don lived his life around the game of hockey?plain and simply put,
it was his passion. He put a
lot of devoted time and effort on and off the ice from the time he was a
boy right through the time he was in the junior hockey ranks. When he reached the age of 16 Don
worked hard to earn his spot on all levels of junior hockey, he tried out
for many junior teams in the Greater Toronto area with little or no
success. Don earned a spot
playing Junior ?A? hockey for
the 05/06 hockey season and then went on to play for
. He had decided at the beginning of
last season to focus more on his studies at
as well as devoting his
time to coaching a girls hockey team. Mid-way through last season
Don decided he wanted to get back into playing as he had missed playing
the game he loved. The
Georgina Ice were a team enjoying a successful season and were battling it
out with Lakefield for 1st place in the Central League. Don came to our hockey club which
had already a solid defensive core with players like Andy Lamoureux, Joel
Hanley, Brandon Gouveia and Shane Habib. What Don brought to the table was
a little more size and a lot of toughness. Don also brought a work ethic to
our dressing room that was second to none as he worked hard in games and
contributions to our team played a great part in the teams success down
the season stretch as well as what was a valiant and successful play-off
run. One of Don?s happiest
moments in the game and in life was being a part of the team hoisting the Cougar Cup
in Sutton Arena after defeating the Lakefield Chiefs in the League
finals. The team played into
the month of April and fell just short in a 7 game series with the Napanee
Raiders in the OHA Provincial Playoffs. Ironically
Napanee was the only other team he played with at the Junior ?C?
Don #3 - Central Ontario Champs/Cougar Cup
When reflecting on Don?s contributions and efforts Ice President
Glenn Ulrich felt that ?22 players like Don on a team can make a
championship team for sure? and ?his work ethic was second to none?. Head Coach Jeff Evans who played a
role in signing Don said the ?he brought much needed toughness and
intensity to our club.? And
finally as General Manager, I recall Don making a thunderous open-ice body
check on a Lakefield player with the Ice leading the game 4-1 with 3
minutes remaining in the game the night we captured the Cougar Cup. As the team was celebrating on the
Ice with the Championship Don skated over to me and thanked me for giving
him a chance to play and I told him that ?we don?t give chances, you earn
them.? When Don was asked
about the body check he made in the dressing room he responded ?I don?t
care what the score is, as long as the clock is ticking I keep
playing.? The hockey
community truly lost a great competitor, team mate and coach last
Friday. Don will be missed by the many who knew him especially by those who
had the pleasure of working and playing with him.
Don - Standing 2nd from Left
be remembered by all whom have meet him. #40 Whitby Dunlops # 3 Georgina