People generally know and accept that there are certain occupations where danger is inherent. While readers in St. Louis are likely aware that professional athletes can and do get injured, they may not think of pro sports as being among those dangerous jobs. Recent deaths of current and former professional athletes, however, have inspired debate about a team or league’s liability for those deaths, particularly if they occur outside the field of play.
These questions have been brought back to the forefront in a case involving the 2011 death of Derek Boogaard, a player in the National Hockey League (NHL). The six-year veteran reportedly died in May of that year as the result of an overdose on alcohol and pain medication. Recently, his parents filed a lawsuit against the NHL for wrongful death.