Trent McCleary, Center for the Montreal Canadians
The injury, caused by a blunt trauma, cannot be avoided except by protecting
the area. If McCleary, or any other NHL player, were willing to wear a
protective neck shield, this injury would not occur. But given the fact that
the injury is extraordinarily uncommon, players do not sacrifice comfort and
flexibility for the added protection. Goalies, however, do wear a shield around
their neck for protection.
McCleary can return to walking and daily life within a week or so, but he
will need longer to recover to the point where he can again play hockey. The
collapsed lung alone would keep him out for 4-6 weeks, and the fractured larynx
alone would keep him out for about 3 months. Over that time, he will be
regaining strength and lung capacity, as well as letting the larynx heal.
The injuries that McCleary suffered will in no way affect his physical
ability to play hockey. However, his voice will likely be altered due to the