Kevin Huber and the Top 10 Instances of Athletes Getting Destroyed in 2013
10 Bone-Crushing Hits from 2013
In a way, it's kind of sad what has happened in the sports world we live in today. While big hits and collisions were once seen as some of the most exciting moments of a game, today things like concussion awareness and the desire to protect players making eight-figure salaries have cut down on the amount of pure destruction that we as fans get to see.
Case in point: the hit, which inspired this article, a December 15 block on a punt return by Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Terence Garvin on Cincinnati Bengals punter Kevin Huber, caused Garvin to be fined $25,000 and has resulted in the league considering rule changes to give more explicit protection to punters.
Meanwhile in the MLB, there's legislation in place to ban purposeful collisions at home plate by the beginning of the 2014 season. After San Francisco Giants star catcher Buster Posey had his season ended by then-Marlin Scott Cousins in an early-2011 collision, many voiced their concerns about the risk of these kinds of plays, and now it seems that they'll be gone for good.
While watching big hits isn't quite as fun as it once was, knowing the possible ramifications that it could have for players who are being hit by athletes who are bigger and stronger than ever, there's still a great adrenaline rush that comes with seeing someone get knocked to the ground at such a rapid pace. So without further ado, here are the 10 best instances of athletes getting destroyed during 2013.
10. Ryan Garbutt's Hit on Alex Burrows
In what may end up amounting to the greatest moment of Ryan Garbutt's career, he leveled the Vancouver Canucks' Alex Burrows.
9. Tim Hudson's Ankle Gets Shattered
Though this injury didn't look too terrible at first glance, the instant replay showing Eric Young Jr. drive his cleat through Tim Hudson's ankle would make even the toughest of observers grimace. It knocked out Hudson for the season, but fortunately he'll be able to return in 2014 for the San Francisco Giants.
7. Desmond Jennings Collides With Lou Marson
In the biggest home plate collision of the 2013 season, Desmond Jennings of the Tampa Bay Rays absolutely demolished Cleveland Indians catcher Lou Marson. To Marson's credit, he got up and stayed in the game, but he suffered a cervical neck strain that ultimately led to his placement on the disabled list.
6. William Moore Body Slams Mike McNeill
In an NFL season that has been largely devoid of bone-crushing hits, William Moore delivered a big one on St. Louis Rams tight end Mike McNeill in Week 2. He flipped McNeill WWE-style into the air, resulting in him being injured for the next couple weeks.
5. Bryce Harper Gets Destroyed ... by the Wall
During a May 13 game against the Los Angeles Dodgers where the Washington Nationals were winning 6-0, outfielder Bryce Harper made the surprising choice to chase a fly ball all the way to the warning track, running face first into the wall. Harper crashed and collapsed onto the ground, where he laid motionless before being helped off the field. Unfortunately, this collision had major consequences for the Nationals, as he had to go on the disabled list in June after unsuccessfully trying to play for the rest of May.
4. Maxim Lapierre Hits Dan Boyle from Behind
In an early-season matchup between the then-undefeated St. Louis Blues and San Jose Sharks, Maxim Lapierre put a damper on the night by checking Sharks star defenseman Dan Boyle into the boards from behind, which required him to be stretchered off the ice and resulted in him missing the next two weeks. Somehow, Lapierre, who has a previous history with questionable hits, was only suspended for five games.
3. Alex Cobb Gets Drilled
In a year that was largely free of home-plate collisions, baseball's biggest injury controversy in 2013 stemmed from line drives being hit straight at pitchers' heads. J.A. Happ of the Toronto Blue Jays and the Tampa Bay Rays' Alex Cobb were both drilled by liners straight at their faces. Interestingly, both incidents took place at Tropicana Field. While Happ sustained greater injuries, Cobb's shellacking was more slightly cringe-worthy, as an Eric Hosmer liner hit him square in the face in less than a second.
2. Terence Garvin's Hit on Kevin Huber
Garvin's hit on Huber, which occurred during an Antonio Brown punt return, left the Bengals punter with a fractured jaw and cracked vertebrae, which ended his season. It's created controversy over whether the play was illegal and should have been called as a penalty, but one thing we can all agree on was that it was absolutely destructive.
1. Jadaveon Clowney's Outback Bowl Hit
While it's easy to forget that this hit occurred in 2013, considering that it happened during the New Year's Day Outback Bowl, Jadaveon Clowney's absolute destruction of Michigan running back Vincent Smith may go down as the greatest hit ever. Luckily, Clowney did this during the 2012-13 season, as it was speculated that this hit may have gotten him ejected under the new NCAA safety rules that were instituted for 2013.