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Drew's Thought of the Day - 10/2/2013

Wednesday, 10.02.2013 / 2:02 PM
By Drew Remenda - Sharks TV, Color Commentator / Great White Bites
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Great White Bites
Drew\'s Thought of the Day - 10\/2\/2013

The fires of the fighting in hockey debate were fanned on opening night when George Parros of the Montreal Canadiens fell to the ice face first and was knocked unconscious.

Parros was not hit with a punch. At the time he was in a scrap with Colton Orr. Parros went to throw a punch as Orr was already falling to the ice, Parros missed and his momentum carried him to the ice as his hands were tied up with Orr. Face...meet ice.

So here it comes again. We all expected it but just not this early in the season.

It is a debate that happens very season and it is a debate that has largely initiated by the sports media, in print or as I can tell you from experience radio talk show hosts. If you want to get the phones ringing, just say, " Fighting in Hockey....".

"Hi, Line one".

One of the arguments to keep fighting in hockey is, its always been part of the game. It's always been in the game therefore it belongs is an appeal to antiquity that is a fallacious argument.

Everything evolves including hockey. The game from year to year has changed with new rules and style of play.

The game used to be played 9 on 9.

Goalies weren't allowed to fall to the ice to make a save.

A player couldn't carry the puck over his own blue line, he had to pass it.

Tradition doesn't make something right.

OK on to argument two.

I've never seen the fans walk out during a fight. That is absolutely true. The NHL knows this and until the fans start walking out or stop buying tickets you won't see the league put "Ban Fighting" on the top of it's "To Do" list.

Argument number three is the most compelling argument. In a player poll, February 2012, 98% of the NHLPA said fighting should not be banned.

These are the guys who are out there very night, who understand the risks and don't seem to care. So why should we?

Mind you out of those 98% I wonder how many of them fight on a regular basis.

I would wager that most are more than happy to watch Parros and Orr duke it out night after night but are more Phil Kessel than John Scott.

Every sport and every league , heck life is full of hypocrisy. When it comes to fighting, and the eagerness to make the game safer for players from visors to the much hyped crackdown on head shots, the NHL looks downright silly.

Yup we're going to suspend you 5 games for cracking a guy on the jaw with a shoulder in a split second reaction but you'll only have to sit in the penalty box for five minutes if you drop your gloves and punch your opponent repeatedly in the face.

Yeah that makes total sense.

I have gone back and forth on fighting in hockey. I used to like it, I used to be a regular in dropping the gloves playing Sr. hockey back home. I believed it was needed.

That changed as I got older and when Don Sanderson a 21 year old playing for the Whitby Dunlops in Ontario died in a fight when he fell and his head struck the ice.

What more does anyone need to know to fight against fighting.

However my anti fighting stance was met with hostility from almost every level of the game. Coaches, Managers, colleagues, fans and players. Now my concern for the players has turned to apathy.

I am indifferent to the noise. However I am not to the future. I believe that with the way the game is going. With the players getting bigger and stronger that one day there will be a catastrophic ending to another fight in the NHL.

Then the entire league will react but in most reactions it will come too late for somebody.

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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 ANA 47 31 10 6 139 124 68
2 NSH 45 30 10 5 137 104 65
3 STL 46 29 13 4 148 111 62
4 CHI 47 30 15 2 148 108 62
5 WPG 48 26 14 8 135 117 60
6 SJS 48 25 17 6 131 132 56
7 VAN 45 26 16 3 124 114 55
8 CGY 47 25 19 3 136 125 53
9 LAK 47 20 15 12 129 126 52
10 COL 48 20 18 10 125 137 50
11 DAL 46 21 18 7 144 151 49
12 MIN 46 20 20 6 128 137 46
13 ARI 46 16 25 5 105 156 37
14 EDM 47 12 26 9 109 158 33

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Pavelski 48 24 18 10 42
L. Couture 48 18 24 2 42
J. Thornton 44 10 27 0 37
B. Burns 48 11 24 -6 35
P. Marleau 48 9 24 -10 33
T. Wingels 47 11 14 -2 25
J. Braun 47 1 18 4 19
T. Hertl 48 8 9 -2 17
M. Vlasic 47 6 10 13 16
J. Sheppard 42 4 9 -2 13
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Niemi 19 11 5 .912 2.57
A. Stalock 5 5 1 .905 2.65
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