McSorley Says There Was No Injury Intent
Marty McSorley testified Wednesday he wasn’t trying to hurt Donald Brashear when he bashed the Vancouver Canuck left wing in the head with his stick.
“I was trying to strike Donald Brashear high in the body, up around his shoulder area,” McSorley said.
“Did you intend to injure him?” asked his lawyer Bill Smart.
“No,” McSorley replied.
McSorley said he was initially unaware that he had injured Brashear.
“I had no idea I’d hit him in the head,” he said.
After seeing the videotape of the hit, McSorley said “my stick initially hit him in the back side of the shoulder.”
McSorley also said he didn’t think deliberately hitting someone in the head was acceptable in NHL hockey.
McSorley, who has played in the NHL for 17 seasons, could get up to 1 1/2 years in prison if convicted of assault for clubbing Brashear during the Feb. 21 game between Boston and Vancouver.
The blow is not in dispute. The judge will try to determine whether such an attack in a professional hockey game constitutes assault.
McSorley testified his job is, among other things, to “match the other team’s toughness and probably overcome their toughness,” and that it “absolutely” means being prepared to fight.
McSorley strongly suggested fighting is not only accepted but an important part of NHL hockey.