Okposo is healthy and thankful

September 06, 2017 - 4:39 pm
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Buffalo, NY (WGR 550) - In March, Kyle Okposo take a routine hit in practice. He didn't think anything of it and never dreamed it would almost ruin his life.

He started having mood changes and had trouble sleeping. He was zapped of all his energy, but still played on March 27 in Florida. After that, he stopped eating and lost weight fast. After a few days, he went to the hospital desperate to find out why he was not sleeping with no appetite.

He wound up in Buffalo General Hospital's Neuro Surgical ICU. He was diagnosed with a condition that causes severe disorientation, confusion and behavioral changes.

His body had a negative reaction to some sleep medication. Okposo finally started to feel better in May and wrote this in his letter to the fans, “I've worked with a lot of different people - concussion experts and people who have dealt with concussions themselves - and I feel confident in the fact that I can play hockey again. In fact, I know I can play again.”

Many people showed the Sabres winger huge support during this tough time. He said, “It meant a lot, it was a tough situation, a tough road and I'm just happy to be back and happy to be able to play again at a high level.”

“Its been tremendous, there's been so many groups of people that have shown their support and when something happens to you and you're going through a tough time, the support that you receive is pretty tremendous and I think it says a lot about the character we have in this game.”

There was a period where all Okposo could do was wonder, what is wrong with me? He said, “It was a couple of weeks. I knew something was going on, so it was definitely a scary thing.”

As he laid in ICU, many thoughts went through his head. At that point, hockey was way down the list. At that point he wondered if he'd ever be normal again, “Yes, I think when you're going through an experience like that, your mind starts to question a lot of different things, and that's probably one of them, but I had such a good support team around me, it was just terrific, so I knew I was going to pull through.”

“I turned the corner in May, I started to feel pretty normal again and just day-to-day activities seemed to be easy again and I just felt clear and now I feel really good.”

Now, Okposo can concentrate totally on hockey. One thing he likes is the changes the Sabres have made, “I've known Phil for quite some time, but I met Jason at the end of the season last year and it was really good to talk to him and just get his prospective on things.”

“I think he really knows what he's doing and he really has a clear vision of where this organization is going to go and I think its really important to have that direction and I'm really looking forward to it.”

Sometimes its more than just a player and a media member. The are ethics and of course our time with the players is at the arena, but seeing Okposo after the Sabres skated and just shake his hand knowing he's now healthy was nice. It was nice to just have that human moment away from being player and reporter. 

You can hear Okposo's entire interview below:

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