Bertuzzi-Moore Case Finally Settled Out Of Court
Ten years ago, Todd Bertuzzi and Steve Moore were involved in one of the most ruthless on-ice attacks in hockey history.
To refresh you, in a game in 2004 between the Vancouver Canucks and the Colorado Avalanche, Vancouver’s Bertuzzi sucker punched Colorado’s Moore from behind, driving him and his face directly into the ice.
On Tuesday, Bertuzzi’s lawyer confirmed that the case has been settled out of court, according to the Canadian Press. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly, and several NHL players, coaches and front-office executives were set to testify in the trial.
The case was set to go to court on Sept. 8.
Moore, the brother of current Rangers forward Dominic Moore, suffered a concussion and three fractured vertebrae from the incident. Following the hit, Moore hasn’t played a minute of hockey, and according to his laywer he has been “unable to obtain employment commensurate to anywhere near his high intellect and Harvard degree.”
According to Michael Grange of Sportsnet, Moore was seeking almost double the $38 million that he was asking for when the case opened. No details have been released yet by either party of the case.
“No detail as of yet, but again: Moore-Bertuzzi litigation is over after 10 years,” Grange said in a tweet. “Moore was seeking $68-million in damages.”
Originally, Bertuzzi pleaded guilty to assault charges from the incident to avoid jail time with the plea, but he was put on probation and forced to take part in 80 hours of community service. He was initially suspended for the remainder of the 2003-04 season after the hit, and the following season was hit by the full-season lockout. Bertuzzi missed a total of 17 months of action between the hit and his first game for the 2005-06 season.
This settlement is a victory for Moore’s side of the case, because he needed some kind of compensation after being forced to retire and give up the potential earnings and success he could have had in the league.
But for Bertuzzi, the Vancouver Canucks and the NHL, the settlement out of court is a relief. It could have had significant negative consequences that came with it.
“This may somewhat close the book on one of the darkest chapters in NHL history. The league went on, largely unchanged by the incident, while Moore remains impacted by his injuries and a lost career,” Chris Peters of CBSSports.com wrote. “Perhaps the settlement will help heal some old wounds, but the rest of us will be left to wonder if anything was really learned from that awful incident of a decade ago.”
By Alex Busch | News Cult