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Former NHL defenseman Aaron Rome has reportedly sued the league and his insurance company after a hip injury ended his career at American Airlines Center in 2014.
The Dallas Morning News reports Rome suffered a left hip injury against the St. Louis Blues in 2014 when Rome was a member of the Dallas Stars. Rome had surgery on the hip, but did not recover to play professional hockey again. The Stars used a compliance buyout on him in the summer of 2014. Rome’s contract, signed before the 2012-13 season, was for three years at $4.5 million total.
Rome then made a claim for disability benefits from HCC Life Insurance Company, but was denied. He alleges that the insurance adjuster assigned to handle his claim was not licensed in Texas and withheld documents he needed to appeal the claim.
It’s unclear how much money Rome is seeking or whether he is eligible for disability benefits.
Here is a screen shot of the NHL’s disability policy, which is referenced in the Dallas Morning News.
Cumulative injuries do not count according to The News. The 32-year-old Rome played a total of 226 games that spanned from the 2006-07 season with the Anaheim Ducks through 2013-14 with Dallas.
According to Rome’s bio from TSN’s player page, he missed NHL games with multiple injuries – thumb, sprained MCL, foot and others.
The Dallas Morning news says the defendants “mistreated an athlete who gave his heart and effort to professional hockey only to be betrayed by those who were supposed to help, protect, and provide benefits he undoubtedly deserves.”
Rome is known for one of the more infamous hits in Stanley Cup Final history. When he was a member of the Vancouver Canucks, Rome concussed Boston Bruins forward Nathan Horton in Game 3 of the 2011 Cup Final and was suspended four games. Horton missed the rest of the series, and the hit became a major rallying cry for the Bruins as they came back from a 2-0 deficit to win the Cup that year.
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