NHL coach demands big changes after Adam Johnson incident.

NHL coach demands big changes after Adam Johnson incident.

An NHL head coach is speaking out in the wake of this past weekend's terrible tragedy.

Jonathan Larivee

Over the weekend the hockey world was stunned by the tragic death of former Pittsburgh Penguins forward Adam Johnson. Johnson's life was taken far too soon at the young age of 29 after he was struck in the neck by the skate of an opponent during a game between the Nottingham Panthers and the Sheffield Steelers of the Elite Ice Hockey League.

While what happened to Johnson is truly horrific, there are already signs that his lasting legacy may be something that will one day save the life of a player like him.

The events that transpired over the weekend have clearly shaken many in the hockey world to their core, and now at least one National Hockey League head coach is demanding that change be enacted in response to the terrible tragedy that cost Johnson his life.

Columbus Blue Jackets head coach Pascal Vincent, who finds himself in that position off the heels of the Mike Babcock controversy, spoke out following Johnson's death and made a strong case for players wearing additional protection to prevent this type of tragedy from occurring again in the future,

"What's the cost?" asked Vincent in wake of the Johnson tragedy. "I mean, you have two eyes. A neck is a very dangerous area. I don't know. I don't know what the cost is. I mean, are we more, we're males and we're strong and we have a lot of testosterones and we want to show it to the world. Yeah. Okay. But what's the cost? When you see this you're wondering, can we prevent the next one? Is there a way to prevent that? And if it's wearing the neck guard or turtle neck guard, I don't know what that is, but why not? Why not? That's how I see it."

I suspect that this is a sentiment that will garner a ton of momentum in the hockey community off the heels of this tragedy, and hopefully saving the lives of other young men can be the lasting legacy that Adam Johnson will leave behind.