After weeks of silence following the announcement of a settlement in his lawsuit against Todd Bertuzzi, Steve Moore issued a statement Thursday acknowledging he “accepted a settlement agreement which has now been finalized and signed by all the parties.”
The settlement came more than 10 years after an attack by Bertuzzi ended Moore’s NHL career and terms were not disclosed. Moore was seeking at least $68-million in damages from the Vancouver Canucks and their former player Bertuzzi for an attack on March 8, 2004 when Moore played for the Colorado Avalanche.
Bertuzzi jumped Moore from behind and left him with a severe concussion and three broken vertebrae in his neck. This was to avenge a hit Moore made weeks earlier on Canucks star Markus Naslund. Bertuzzi later pleaded guilty to assault causing bodily harm and was placed on probation. He also served a brief suspension from the NHL.
Moore’s lawyer Tim Danson said in a statement that he did not want Moore to acknowledge the settlement of the lawsuit, which was scheduled to go to trial Sept. 8, “until the language of the settlement documents was agreed to by all parties and I was in possession of executed settlement documents. That happened today.”
The next step for Moore, 35, is to promote The Steve Moore Foundation, which will “to bring more attention and resources to the prevention and treatment of concussions and other head and neck injuries in sport.”
“This day comes with mixed emotions,” Moore said in the statement. “These years have been very difficult for me and my family. The injuries I sustained in my rookie year, the years I spent trying to return to my NHL career, and dealing with the loss of my career and the ensuing legal case have been long and trying experiences.
“While nothing replaces the loss of one's dream, I am happy my family will no longer be burdened by an unresolved legal case and I am grateful to be able to move forward. I thank the fans and the public who have supported me so passionately and tirelessly, not just across Canada, and the U.S., but around the world – your support has meant more than you can imagine.”
Moore also thanked his family for “your unwavering love and devotion which kept me going over these last 10 years.”