Home News Henri Richard, Montreal Canadiens Icon and 11-time Stanley Cup Winner, Diagnosed with CTE Posthumously

Henri Richard, Montreal Canadiens Icon and 11-time Stanley Cup Winner, Diagnosed with CTE Posthumously

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Henri Richard, a Hockey Hall of Fame inductee, was identified as having stage 3 chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) at his time of passing in March 2020, as reported by the family of the Montreal Canadiens star on Wednesday.

“My father’s brain donation and subsequent diagnosis, I hope, will spur efforts towards prevention, more in-depth research, and ultimately, a cure for CTE,” said Denis Richard, Henri’s son, in a statement released by the Concussion Legacy Foundation. “It’s important for people to understand that CTE is a disease that can affect athletes in various sports, not just football.”

The Alzheimer’s Association characterizes CTE as a “progressive and fatal brain disorder resulting from repeated traumatic brain injuries.”

Richard, who held a record-breaking 11 Stanley Cup victories in the NHL, passed away at 84, also battling Alzheimer’s disease at that time. As per the press release of the foundation, out of 17 NHL players examined, 16 have been diagnosed with CTE, including Steve Montador, Ralph Backstrom, Bob Probert, and Stan Mikita.

Richard, whose career ended in 1975, played in an era where helmets were not yet compulsory in the NHL – a mandate that came only in 1979.

Ken Dryden, Richard’s ex-teammate from Montreal and fellow Hall of Famer, has been advocating for the National Hockey League, and hockey at other levels, to enact stricter penalties for all hits to the head due to their long-term detrimental effects.

“I was a teammate of Henri’s. Together, we claimed two Cups. He doesn’t fit any simple categories, doesn’t check off any typical boxes,” Dryden said in a statement. “He played in a different era, the old-time hockey, was he all about fights? Not Henri. A heavy hitter? Not Henri. Much like Stan Mikita and Ralph Backstrom, he was an exceptional skater, physical, yet with the mind of a playmaker, and that’s how he played. But those hits to the head, we must recognize, no matter the sport, are detrimental.”

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Henri Richard CTE Diagnosis

What disease was Henri Richard diagnosed with posthumously?

Henri Richard was diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a progressive and fatal brain disease, after his death in March 2020.

Who announced Henri Richard’s posthumous CTE diagnosis?

The family of Henri Richard announced the posthumous diagnosis of his stage 3 chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

What does Henri Richard’s son hope will come from his father’s CTE diagnosis?

Henri Richard’s son, Denis Richard, hopes his father’s posthumous CTE diagnosis will lead to increased efforts in prevention, more comprehensive research, and eventually, a cure for CTE.

How common is CTE among NHL players according to the Concussion Legacy Foundation?

According to a press release from the Concussion Legacy Foundation, 16 out of 17 studied NHL players have been diagnosed with CTE.

What was Ken Dryden’s stance on hits to the head in hockey?

Ken Dryden, a former teammate of Henri Richard and fellow Hall of Famer, has been advocating for the NHL and other levels of hockey to enact stricter penalties for all hits to the head due to their long-term detrimental effects.

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