Red Wings F Bob Probert's problems with drugs and alcohol were caused by an attention-deficit disorder, Probert's lawyer says.

The player has been taking Depakote, an anti-convulsant prescription drug, since he was diagnosed with the disorder at a federal correctional medical center in February, Harold Fried said at a news conference in Detroit. Probert served three months at the center for a drug conviction.

"People who have this disorder, because they cannot sit still or focus, have a tendency to self-medicate," Fried said. "What they do is drink or use drugs."

Probert is fighting deportation to Canada after being convicted of trying to bring 14 grams of cocaine into the United States. He was arrested in March 1989 on the U.S.-Canadian border at Detroit. He also has a history of alcohol-related arrests. He was suspended from the NHL for a year after the drug arrest.


Karhu, one of the leading manufacturers of hockey equipment, is suing the NHL and its 21 teams, alleging they've violated U.S. antitrust laws. The suit was contained within Karhu's response to a case filed by the NHL last month in Philadelphia. Karhu denied the NHL's allegations and asked that the league's suit be dismissed. The NHL alleged that Karhu Canada and its U.S. subsidiary, as well as other hockey equipment suppliers, fixed prices on customized products sold to NHL teams in response to the league's On-Ice Brand Identification Program.

Under the terms of the program, manufacturers must make payments to the NHL or its brand names and logos must be removed from equipment used during league games. Karhu is not participating in the program this season. Referees have been instructed to call penalties on players displaying nonapproved trademarks or brand names.

Karhu's suit claims the league, its 21 member teams and the NHL's licensing agent, Licensing Corporation of America, conspired through the On-Ice Program to obtain free equipment, boycott Karhu products, force Karhu to place NHL or team logos on equipment sold at retail and pay a substantial royalty on consumer sales to the NHL.