Lutsen resident and ‘Miracle on Ice’ hockey player arrested for assault; family suspects CTE
Aug 22, 2019 08:09AM
● By Editor
From the Washington Post - August 22, 2019
A member of the 1980 Miracle on Ice hockey team remains in a Minnesota jail, accused of beating a neighbor in an alleged attack that his sister linked to possible chronic traumatic encephalopathy.
Mark Pavelich, 61, faces charges of second- and third-degree assault, possession of an illegal shotgun and possession of a gun with a missing serial number after he attacked his neighbor with a 3- to 4-foot metal pole. He remains held in lieu of $250,000 in the Cook County jail in northern Minnesota, and a hearing to determine his mental competence was ordered by District Court Judge Michael Cuzzo in a hearing Monday.
"Mark is the most kind and gentle person you'd ever know," Pavelich's sister, Jean Gevik, told the Star Tribune. "This is a totally different guy."
She and his family believe that "all the concussions and the blows he had in the NHL" caused CTE, a degenerative brain disease that has been linked to concussions and repeated blows to the head, particularly in former NFL and NHL players. Erratic behavior, lack of impulse control, memory loss and depression are among the symptoms. Pavelich spent seven seasons in the NHL with the New York Rangers, Minnesota North Stars and San Jose Sharks.
This undated photo provided by the Cook County Jail via the Star Tribune shows Mark Pavelich, a former professional hockey player and forward for the 1980 "Miracle on Ice" Olympic team. Pavelich has been charged with felony assault for allegedly beating his neighbor with a metal pole, breaking several bones. Pavelich faces multiple counts. (Cook County Jail/Star Tribune via AP)
Pavelich, a land developer on Lake Superior's north shore, allegedly attacked his unidentified 63-year-old neighbor at Pavelich's home in Lutsen, Minnesota. The two had been fishing, according to the criminal complaint obtained by the Star Tribune, and the attack allegedly was caused by Pavelich's belief that his beer had been "spiked." The victim was hospitalized with two cracked ribs, a bruised kidney, a fractured vertebra and possible internal bleeding. He also had bruises on his arms and legs and a large mark across his back.
Pavelich and the U.S. Olympic team vaulted into history with their stunning 4-3 victory over the Soviet Union in a semifinal game and Pavelich assisted on Mike Eruzione’s winning goal. The U.S. went on to beat Finland in the gold-medal game in Lake Placid. Pavelich, a Minnesota native, played in 355 NHL games, then essentially disappeared in retirement. Seven years ago, Pavelich’s wife Kara, 44, died in an accidental fall from a second-story balcony at their Lutsen home.
The puck goes past the feet of U.S. goalie Jim Craig as a tight defense stops the Soviet attack in the first period of the USA vs. USSR ice hockey game, Friday, February 22, 1980, in Lake Placid. Players are, from left to right: Mark Pavelich, William Baker (partially hidden), James Craig, and Soviet player Helmut Balderis. (AP Photo)
To read the original article and see related reporting, follow this link. https://www.syracuse.com/sports/2019/08/miracle-on-ice-hockey-player-arrested-for-assault-family-sus...