Penguins forward Beau Bennett has been diagnosed with the mumps, almost spread it to children
Pittsburgh Penguins forward Beau Bennett just wanted to spread some holiday cheer when he went to visit the Children’s Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
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This isn’t out of the ordinary for NHLers to do — the league is well-known for their frequent hospital visits throughout the season, from silly trips in Halloween costumes to holiday visits such as this one that come laden with presents and fun days of video games and hugs.
In light of the recent ‘mumpsgate’ the league has suffered, though, maybe the players should hold off on making any more holiday visits — for the time being, at least.
Just days after visiting the children, Bennett started to display signs of the mumps… and with captain Sidney Crosby already confirmed with a mumps diagnosis, the hospital immediately began taking extra precautions with any children or family members who had come in contact with Beau. Good thing, too — sure enough, Bennett’s mumps diagnosis was confirmed just days after he was quarantined from the other players.
This week alone, Bennett and Crosby have been joined by New York Rangers skater Derick Brassard on the list of diagnosed players; last week, the New Jersey Devils announced that both Travis Zajac and Adam Larsson had confirmed cases, as well.
It seems that the first recorded case in the Eastern Conference came from Rangers forward Tanner Glass, but the uncontested patient zero still seems to be Anaheim Ducks winger Corey Perry — which raises concerns about how he contracted the virus, and why it’s still spreading. Crosby’s diagnosis is raising the most alarming questions, since he was not only given an extra inoculation against the virus last winter prior to his Olympic travels to Sochi, but he was one of the players who had willingly opted to receive an additional vaccination when the mumps first broke out in the Western Conference.
There’s no confirmation that Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith also has the mumps, but he’s a scratch this week for illness — and no one will be particularly surprised if he’s sick, as well. Merry Christmas, NHL — maybe, if we’re on Santa’s Nice List, he’ll bring us a mumps-free second half of the season?
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