Kukla's Korner

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Brooks: NHL, NHLPA need to ax fighting

You might expect that the New York Post's Larry Brooks would have a strong reaction to the George Parros-Colton Orr scrap which yielded Parros exiting the game on a stretcher with a concussion, and Brooks does indeed offer suggestions that the NHL and NHLPA need to embrace Jacques Plante-style, "Just because everybody else did it, doesn't mean that I have to put my face on the line" mentality and plain old legislate fighting out of the game:

“We’ve always done it that way,” “It’s part of the game’s heritage” and “The fans love it,” can’t be valid defenses for the status quo. You’ll note how “Nobody gets hurt in fights” has disappeared from the lexicon, because, as we know, people do get hurt, and sometimes badly, in fights.

Beanballs were once an accepted part of baseball. No more. We have learned too much about the effect of blows to the brain to simply turn a blind eye to the ramifications of some of our sports’ most storied traditions.

It is time for the NHL and NHLPA to form a joint committee of executives, retired players and physicians to both study the impact of fighting in the league and to recommend changes in the landscape meant to minimize, if not eliminate, sanctioned fistfights on the ice.

It is time for the NHL to evolve. The league that keeps hitting itself in the head is likely to discover it will feel so good when it — and the punching — stops.

That's the end of the column, and the rest of it's worth your time, regardless of whether you agree or disagree with his sentiment.

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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