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Time For The NHL To Slow Down

from Tony Gallagher of the Vancouver Province,

Players are not only bigger and faster as a result of genetics, nutrition and their training regimen improvements, they are increasingly wearing lighter and in some cases even more lethal elbow and shoulder pads to further their on-ice velocity. It only stands to reason that increased player size and velocity in the same confined area of a rink will increase the frequency and impact of collisions and thus increase the likelihood of concussions growing in frequency.

So how about slowing the players down the way Formula One and IndyCar racing did with its cars? What about doing something like going back to tube skates or insisting a skate weight more —a set percentage of a player’s weight for instance — as a way of slowing down the players if you doggedly insist on playing the games on the same size ice surface.

It’s radical and perhaps even a stupid idea, maybe the dumbest this column has ever floated. But the concept of sitting the offending player out as long as the injured player is out with a concussion is surely just as dumb, and that gets floated all the time.

Punishing players because collisions cause concussions seems inherently unfair and ill advised. Collisions are bound to increase as players’ size and speed increases.


Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink


Down River Dan's avatar

Get rid of carbon fiber ballistic elbow & shoulder pads??? ........That’s lunacy !!

So, a few guys will be eating baby food when their in their 60’s.  No problem there eh NFL???

shut eye

Posted by Down River Dan on 07/19/13 at 10:34 AM ET

Primis's avatar

maybe the dumbest this column has ever floated

My God, even he knows and admitted it.

He cites car racing as an example to “slow things down”, and that’s a poor choice because in each of those cases the fix was/is only temporary and they find other ways around it.

You can’t stop the natural evolution of something.

Posted by Primis on 07/19/13 at 10:46 AM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Again, remove the damn pads. You’d be amazed what it would do when people realize they’re not human missiles.

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 07/19/13 at 11:39 AM ET

TKShreve's avatar

Send them back to wooden sticks. Have a little respect for the founding of the game.

And get rid of the plastic pads. Pads should be made of…..... wait for it…... padding.

Posted by TKShreve from East Uptown on 07/19/13 at 12:14 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

The game was too slow, now the game is too fast.

You’d think somewhere along the line there would have been that one moment, that one fleeting moment, when the game was just right.

Nope, that moment doesn’t exist, because the problem isn’t the game went from not enough speed to too much, the problem is the fact some columnists simply run out of things to write about.

The media once simply reported the news. Now, they are told to make the news, all for the mighty dollar.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 07/19/13 at 12:58 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.

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