Nathan Horton Ready to Play, Tom Sestito's Agent is Tactless

By Emma Harger
Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

Just one of many side effects of the NHL lockout is the fact that injured players who were medically cleared for play during the offseason must now continue to sit back and wait for their first chance to play again.

Take, for example, Nathan Horton from the Boston Bruins. Concussed in January after a hit by Tom Sestito of the Philadelphia Flyers, Horton’s season ended early and he also sat out the 2012 playoffs as he recovered from his second concussion in less than a year.

Here is video of the hit (it occurs at 25 seconds in after Sestito puts another high hit on then-Bruin Steven Kampfer):

However, over the summer, Horton was cleared for contact and deemed ready to go again. His agent recently reiterated that to ESPN Boston, except of course now Horton and the rest of his teammates have to wait to get back to NHL action instead of just Horton waiting.

Among those who read the most recent news on Horton was Scott Norton, who is Sestito’s agent.

Right, because traumatic brain injuries (that’s what concussions are, folks; they’re not just small headaches and minor dizziness–they can dramatically alter people’s lives and brains sometimes do not heal completely from the trauma) are such cause for comedy.

Plus, looking back at the video, it was Sestito who got in Horton’s way.

Called out on his exceedingly poor attempt at humor by many people, Norton then went on the defensive instead of genuinely issuing an apology. He points out that the hit was legal (because legal hits obviously never cause injury–pardon the sarcasm), gleefully retweets someone who also thought it was just a hilarious joke, gets condescending about players needing to keep their heads up, blames Bruins fans for not venting enough at team owner Jeremy Jacobs like that could end the lockout and then mentions physically-minded Bruins players in an attempt to make what he said okay somehow.

Then he kind of tried to change his tune, telling someone they can’t comment unless they’ve seen a player retire due to injuries (what?) and then finally getting down to what I call a fauxpology. Fauxpologies shift the blame for what was said to other people and their interpretation of it instead of taking ownership over what was said and taking responsibility for all manner of responses.

Ironically, later he retweeted a report about Blake Geoffrion, who hurt his head during an AHL game and was taken to the hospital. This time, he didn’t editorialize about Geoffrion’s injury or whose path he should not have strayed into, so maybe he did learn a lesson.

Of course, he’s also been retweeting more people who try to portray traumatic brain injuries as jokes and explain that Norton didn’t really mean any harm by it, but those over-sensitive Internet types are making a mountain out of a molehill, so perhaps he didn’t really learn anything after all.

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