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Don't let vicious play tarnish the Super Bowl

The NFL's regular season ends this weekend and the playoffs to determine the Super Bowl matchup come next. Pro football, as well as hockey's NHL, must further reduce head injuries and provide a better example for young athletes on how to avoid concussions.

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The sports cliché about two opponents going “head to head” has lately taken on a new and troubling meaning.

Head injuries to some big stars in professional sports have put a spotlight on the need for more safety in knock-’em-sock-’em team sports. Football and hockey, in particular, with their fans demanding action and thrills, are prone to violence.

As the National Football League (NFL) heads toward the Super Bowl and college football finishes up its bowl games, many more millions will watch in glorious high definition as helmets crack, bodies fly, and stretchers come on the field.

Meanwhile, the National Hockey League (NHL) will offer a special event – its Winter Classic played on an outdoor rink (weather permitting), featuring arch-rivals, the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals. If it’s anything like a typical regular-season game, several players may need tending to during or after the game by the trainer.

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