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Players Should Say Yes Or No To Fighting

from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,

George Parros’s opening-night concussion, sustained in a scrap with ex-Bruin Colton Orr, is stirring the pot about the future of fighting. Respected general managers Ray Shero, Steve Yzerman, and Jim Rutherford expressed their reservations about fighting to TSN after Parros’s injury. But the players are the men bashing their knuckles, flattening their noses, and experiencing the mental strain of fighting — and failing — in front of thousands of fans. They should dictate its future.

If they say no mas, who are we, as spectators, to say otherwise? But the next player I meet to declare fighting off limits will be my first.

There are exceptions to fighting’s honor, John Scott chasing Phil Kessel being one of them. But for the most part, in what sounds like an oxymoron, fighters practice decorum. You ask others to fight. You don’t pick on non-fighters. You stick up for a teammate. You don’t punch once the fight is over. You don’t gloat upon victory. Hockey is a violent sport. Players get hurt, far more often in regular game play than fights. If players want to keep fighting, that should be good enough for its consumers.

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Hank1974's avatar

A couple of thoughts.
1. If it were up to the players, there would never have been any changes to the obstruction that plagued the dead-puck era. Only after the league cracked down on hooking, holding and interference did the players recognize how bad things were.
This goes for goaltending equipment as well. Most goalies want to get bigger, not smaller.
So the players don’t always know best.
2. If the players decide to keep fighting in, then all of them need to sign an agreement that states they cannot sue the NHL if they suffer any future brain damage related to hockey injuries; notably fighting.
So if a player engages in more than x-amount of career fights, and he shows signs of CTE or dementia, etc. then they have no legal right to pursue a lawsuit from the NHL for damages.

Posted by Hank1974 on 10/06/13 at 08:13 PM ET

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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.

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