NHL linesman, Don Henderson, has filed a lawsuit in Calgary Court against Calgary Flames Player Dennis Wideman and the Flames organization for the vicious hit from behind that left the veteran official without a job. Since the hit on January 27, 2016, Henderson, who served as a linesman in over 1,300 NHL games, has not been able to return to work. Wideman received a 10-game suspension after the incident.
In a court document, Henderson described the night of the incident.
“During the second period of the game, as the Nashville Predators were moving the puck forward and exiting their own zone, Don Henderson was skating backward watching the play,” his statement of claim says. “Suddenly and without warning Wideman, who was skating out of the Calgary Flames zone towards the bench … to make a line change, lifted his arms and violently struck Don Henderson from behind, propelling him down to the ice.”
Henderson’s suit claims “Wideman intentionally and deliberately struck (the plaintiff).” Since the day of the incident Henderson has had to undergo multiple medical procedures and even psychological counseling, the suit claims. He was also required periods of physiotherapy, chiropractic, massage and other medical treatments as well.
Wideman knew or ought to have known that his actions … would result in damage to Don Henderson,” the lawsuit says. “Wideman disregarded the National Hockey League official rules, specifically in respect of physical abuses of officials and in doing so ought to have known that his actions would cause injury, loss, and damage to an unsuspecting Don Henderson. Wideman knew or ought to have known that by elevating his arms and hockey stick and violently striking (the plaintiff) from behind, that he would injure an unsuspecting Don Henderson.”
Henderson’s lawsuit was filed on April 18 and seeks damages of $10.25 million. The Calgary Flames and Dennis Wideman were recently knocked out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and have yet to comment on the situation.