November 15th was a sad day for fans and family of NHL star Bobby Ryan. Ryan left the ice to enter the NHL Player Assistance Program under rehabilitation for alcoholism only days later. The New Jersey native had reportedly been suffering from alcohol dependency for a long time.
He recently opened up to reporters for the first time, explaining that he had attempted to deal with his issues alone for a very long time before seeking professional help for himself and his career.
A Comeback for the History Books
Ryan is back, and he's hit the ice for the Ottawa Senators with gusto and determination. In his second game since returning, he faced off against the Canucks. Ryan was overwhelmed by the support from the fans at the Canadian Tire Centre and was brought to tears on the bench when they gave him a standing ovation, chanting his name after he landed an incredibly impressive hat trick.
Because of Ryan, the Senators left the stadium victorious by 5 goals to 2, scoring the two final points in the 3rd period.
NHL Assistance Program
The NHL assistance program is a confidential service founded in 1996 for players and their families’ wellbeing. It provides assistance with mental health, substance abuse, and many other matters revolving around health and wellbeing issues.
Looking to the Future
It's great to have Ryan back in play, and we, especially, can't wait to see where his career takes the hockey veteran next. It's onward and upward for this talented sportsman. He’s an inspiration to many for seeking support and for opening up on a subject shrouded in stigma.