Red and Black Hockey
by David Lee on 10/17/08 at 05:03 PM ET
After months and months of waiting, the issue between the Hurricanes and defenseman David Tanabe has finally been resolved.
Tanabe is finally off the books, and Carolina will pay out $850k spread out over the next three years. This payment is per an agreement that was made between Avi and the Hurricanes.
I wrote about this yesterday, wondering when, if ever, this would come to a close. After the attempted buyout and resulting grievance, the Hurricanes scheduled a meeting with an arbitrator. That meeting was to occur “sometime in October”, but according to this News & Observer piece, the hearing was canceled when the two sides came to this agreement.
Neil Sheehy, Tanabe’s agent, said the player had been advised by doctors that it would be dangerous to continue playing hockey.
“His career is over,” Sheehy said. “The reality of it is the doctors told him not to play and he will not play. He will not be signing with a European team or any other team. His career has ended.”
Just for good measure, everything about this agreement was checked out for legal reasons, and both parties and all other associated parties are satisfied
“Everything has been taken care of,” Rutherford said. “The Players Association has signed off on it and the grievance withdrawn.”
I don’t want to be misunderstood about this. I’m glad Avi is making the decision to step away before he suffers any significant and irreversible brain damage. I’ve been on record as saying that the league, the teams and the players should take concussions more seriously. However, I think that Avi intentionally let this thing drag out. I have no way of knowing for sure, but I strongly suspect that he knew in April that he wanted to retire and that he stood to gain more financially doing it this way.
I could have this all wrong. It could be the case that Avi was trying to get back to where he needed to be. But it is undeniable that he refused to do any of the things that the Hurricanes asked him to do from April onward.
At any rate, this ordeal is finally over, and the Hurricanes can wash their hands of Tanabe. For good.
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About Red and Black Hockey
David Lee is a restaurant manager with an unused degree in political science. He can be found at Carolina Hurricanes games, Scrabble tournaments and indie-rock shows. Sometimes, all in the same day.