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

Wednesday, 10.2.2013 / 11:02 AM PT
By Drew Remenda - Sharks TV, Color Commentator / Great White Bites
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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 x - ANA 78 49 22 7 227 216 105
2 x - NSH 78 47 22 9 224 193 103
3 STL 76 46 23 7 229 190 99
4 CHI 76 46 24 6 217 176 98
5 MIN 76 44 25 7 219 186 95
6 VAN 77 45 27 5 224 208 95
7 CGY 77 42 28 7 229 204 91
8 WPG 77 39 26 12 217 204 90
9 LAK 76 37 25 14 201 192 88
10 DAL 77 37 30 10 239 248 84
11 SJS 76 37 30 9 212 215 83
12 COL 76 35 29 12 206 213 82
13 EDM 76 23 40 13 185 255 59
14 ARI 77 23 46 8 161 256 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Pavelski 76 36 31 9 67
L. Couture 76 25 37 -4 62
J. Thornton 72 14 48 -5 62
B. Burns 76 16 40 -6 56
P. Marleau 76 17 36 -17 53
T. Wingels 69 15 20 -5 35
T. Hertl 76 12 17 -2 29
M. Nieto 66 8 16 -11 24
M. Vlasic 70 9 14 12 23
J. Braun 65 1 22 6 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Niemi 29 22 7 .914 2.62
A. Stalock 7 7 2 .905 2.55
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