By Stefan Kubus -
It’s always a little extra special for Phoenix Coyotes veteran forward David Moss when he plays in Detroit – a team he grew up watching in Livonia, Mich., when he spent time playing for the likes of the Livonia Knights travel team.
But on Thursday night, Moss played with a little extra motivation inside.
Seventeen-year-old Catholic Central forward Matt Sorisho suffered a devastating spinal cord injury last Friday after crashing back-first into the end boards during while playing in a tournament game with the Michigan Development Hockey League.
Like Sorisho, Moss also sparked the offense for CC in his high school days, and even wore the same sweater number: 18, a number that Moss still dons to this day for the Coyotes.
“At first, I was sick to my stomach,” Moss said of finding out what had happened to Sorisho. “Anytime you hear something like that happening, it’s a terrible tragedy, especially when it’s somebody that hits close to home and is part of the CC hockey family.”
Moss visited Sorisho in the hospital during his return to Michigan this week. Prior to taking the ice in Detroit Thursday night, Moss had Sorisho’s No. 18 sweater hanging from his stall to honor the injured Shamrock.
“I just wanted to help out and lift his spirits in any way I can,” Moss said. “It’s just a small gesture. He’s got a lot of support from a lot of people. I’m just someone that’s trying to do the same, help out, try to lift his spirits and let him know I’m there for him.”
Originally, Moss had aimed to wear Sorisho’s sweater in warm-ups at Joe Louis Arena, but due to league policies and it being a last-minute request, it never worked out, unfortunately.
“I was talking with Todd Johnson and we were kicking around some ideas, different things to do,” Moss said. “We thought that was a pretty good idea, but with the league and everything on such short notice, it was tough to get it approved and figure it out.”
Moss added that the whole thing came together last minute, but once he gets back to Phoenix, he’s also planning to send a Coyotes jersey to Sorisho later in the year.
Having played for CC himself, Moss said choosing the high-school route was definitely the best for him, considering he was something of a “late-bloomer.”
“At that point in my life, I was probably a bit of a late-bloomer, so high school hockey really helped me in the fact I got to practice a lot more, I got to play at a really high level at a great school and had the opportunity to be coached by really good coaches in high school,” Moss said. “I think they’ve done a great job developing players there and getting them to the next level.”
At the start of the Red Wings/Coyotes game Thursday night, a total of $830 had been donated to the Matt Sorisho Hockey Injury Fund on GiveForward. By the end of the game, an astounding $3,005 had been given across 19 donations. There are still over three months to donate on the website if you wish to do so.