10 Sports Injuries That Could End An Athlete’s Career

Alvin Williams career ending injury

Regardless of what sport, players play best when they’re in their top form. Even with every precaution taken to prevent players from hurting each other such as rules and padding, they are still at risk to major and serious injuries; since a players lively hood depends on them playing the game, a players health truly is essential. The list below is a compilation of injuries that can unfortunately end their careers prematurely.

Post-Concussion Syndrome

The most common among such serious injuries is Post-Concussion Syndrome. Athletes, especially hockey players, know the dangers of the sport they play. The NHL has a history of debates on safety of the sport and one hot topic includes concussions. One example of a game gone wrong takes place on September 15, 1997. Toronto Maple Leaf, Nick Kypreos, sustained a concussion after a fight with New York Rangers’ Ryan Vanden Bussche in a pre-season game which forced him to retire early.

Serious Knee Injuries

Ex-Raptors guard, Alvin Williams, played just over five seasons in the NBA. In the 2005-06 season he injured his knee forcing him on the injury list after playing one game that season.

Damaged Major Ligaments

On October 30, 2005 Minnesota Vikings quarterback, Daunte Culpepper, sustained major damage to three major ligaments in his knee in a match against the Carolina Panthers. 

Spinal Cord Contusion

Linebacker, Reggie Brown, was a first round draft pick in 1996 drafted by the Detroit Lions. Unfortunately his career came stopped short in 1997. In the last game of the season, Brown assisted on a tackle against New York Jets Adrian Murrell, and remained on the playing field for 17 minutes. Reggie had suffered a spinal cord contusion during the tackle. He was taken off the field, and was revived by CPR. Reggie didn’t lose muscle function or suffer paralysis from this event. Sadly, he retired after two seasons in the NFL.

Herniated Disk

Mack Strong, a fullback for the Seattle Seahawks, had an above average career. He was selected to play in two all-star Pro Bowls games in back-to-back years (2005 and 2006). When he herniated a disk in 2007 against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the doctors advised him to hang up the cleats. The injury itself wasn’t a massive or overwhelming. However, if Strong continued to play, the disk could lead to paralysis if he was hit improperly. Mack thought this was enough, and retired

Fractures In Both Bones In The Right Leg

David Busst is a ex-professional soccer player from England who was playing for Coventry City in 1996 when he suffered a career-ending fracture in a match against Manchester United. Busst collided with two United players which resulted in compound fractures in both bones of his lower right leg. It was a gruesome scene and the injuries were so significant that Busst nearly had to have his leg amputated.

Broken Jaw/ Glaucoma

Kirby Puckett already won two World Series titles. But, with Puckett’s talent, he wasn’t going to stop playing baseball for a good while. However, that changed on September 28th, 1995. Puckett was at bat against Dennis Martinez, when one of Martinez’s fastballs hit Puckett’s jaw. Suffering a broken jaw, he began his rehabilitation in the Grapefruit League. But, on March 28th, 1996 Puckett woke up, not able to see out of his right eye. After visiting the doctor, he was given the news he had developed glaucoma.

Compound Fracture

On November 18th, 1985. The Washington Redskins faced the New York Giants. Joe Theismann a two-time Pro Bowler and quarterback was tackled from behind by linebackers Lawrence Taylor and Harry Carson. When they tackled Theismann, his leg snapped right in the middle fracturing both the tibia and the fibula. It was a major incident in Joe’s career, sadly leading to his immanent retirement.

Fractured Vertebrae

Eric LeGrand suffered his injury on the football field in 2010. LeGrand was tackling against his opponent on a kickoff, which he never got up from when he hit the ground. LeGrand is now paralyzed from the neck down, though he keeps up the fight to regain movement in his limbs. He has been able to regain a little sensation in his body, which is a great sign for LeGrand. But sadly he will never play football again.


In 1909 Doc Powers, a catcher who played in major leagues was fatally injured by chasing a foul pop-up ball straight into a wall. Powers suffered major internal injuries from the collision and died two weeks later from complications.

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