by Patrick Hoffman on 01/16/12 at 03:00 PM ET
With all the concussions that are happening in the National Hockey League this year, I figured now would be a good time to do an e-mail interview with an NHLer who has had one and that is Ian Lapperriere.
Lapperriere has not played in the NHL since the 2009-10 season due to post-concussion syndrome. Ian was kind enough to take the time to tell us about how he got into hockey, how he became an NHLer, why he likes Twitter and more.
PH: How did you get into hockey?
IL: My parents put me on skates as soon as I could walk. When I turned 5, I joined my first team.
PH: Growing up, who was your favorite team/player? Why?
IL: I am from Montreal so the Canadiens were my favorite team. Guy Lafleur and Guy Carboneau were my favorite players.
PH: At what point in your life did you know that you wanted to be a professional hockey player?
IL: My dream since I started skating was to play in the NHL. When I became a Junior hockey player, I knew I had a shot.
PH: Tell us about what your first NHL game was like.
IL: I got called up as an emergency call up from my JR team. I was 19 years old at the time so it was very rare. It felt like a dream.
PH: What was it like to play for the St. Louis Blues, New York Rangers, Los Angeles Kings, Colorado Avalanche and most recently, the Philadelphia Flyers?
IL: I was lucky and I had a great time everywhere I’ve played. The New York Rangers was probably one the team I felt where I never had a chance. I played in great city and met a lot of nice people along the way . If I have any regrets, it’s not having a chance to wear the orange and black for more than one year.
PH: Being that you have dealt/are still dealing with this particluar kind of injury, what do you think about all the concussions that have occurred in the NHL this season?
IL: Concussions are part of any physical sport and guys know the risk that they take when they step on the ice. They are willing to take that risk because the rewards are great.
PH: What do you think the league can do to be even better than it is now when it comes to handeling concussions?
IL: I think the NHL is doing the right thing with the suspensions. The game is too fast now and I think concussions will still be part of the game. Guys are bigger, stronger, and faster and there is not enough room to react.
PH: You have a huge following on Twitter. What do you think of Twitter in general?
IL: I wasn’t a fan, but now I’m addicted. It’s great to stay in touch with the fans and to speak your mind.
PH: Is there anything else you’d like to share with Kukla’s Korner readers?
IL: That I appreciate all the support from the fans that I’ve got in my career and especially since my injury. I have had great support from NHL fans, specially Flyers’ fans.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.