Agreed, the role of enforcer, and fighting in general, time has passed. Fighting should be an automatic game suspension. I've read many times the pressure enforcers face before games knowing they have to fight and the possible injuries they could face. Players shouldn't have to go through that, plus all the mental problems they have after their career's are finished.
Also, it's been said many times, hits to the head should be taken more seriously. I don't understand why it's so difficult for people to understand what's going on, and how easy things can be avoided by doing something as simple and civil by banning hits to the head. Either someone is going to have to die on the ice, or Don Cherry and the old generation of thinking will have to pass on for anything to change.
The NFL has made rule after rule after rule after rule surrounding hits and how they can be made, and I don't see much difference at all regarding head injuries.
The NHL has begun to make rule after rule and oh look, still, head injuries are common.
While I applaud the fact that there's been significant breakthroughs and aggressive research being placed on head injuries and the results of them, at some point, one has to simply recognize that this is in fact a physically violent sport that a player opt's in to, and there are risks that are associated with it. I don't see people going into boxing, rugby, UFC, or other sports telling them they need to start banning violent acts orf****** nitpicking every which way they can hit.
The use of research surrounding injuries to the head and prevention should be used in a way of prevention that doesn't undermine how the sport of hockey has long been played. The reverting of pads, for example, I can certainly agree with. This impacts the player who's doing the hitting making it more painful for the player making the hit and logically would place more restraint on the person, as well as make the player making the hit absorb more of the damage. This still does not undermine the physical nature of the sport or flatten the role that physical play has in the sport.
I'm watching in more recent years this sort of placing sports on some fantasy, cloud-nine pedestal where you can remove the physical/violent aspect of the sport and have it a) still be the sport played at the same level of competitive nature, and b) be entertaining. If you notice I'm not much of a fighter slappy at all, and I come into quite a heavy disagreement with those who assert that we need fighters on this team, on the other hand, the physical nature is part of what makes hockey, "hockey", and what makes football, "football". This contemporary fantasy attempt at idealizing every single hit that's placed where it's perfectly away from the head, or perfectly square, or perfectly above the knees, and where the player lands on a spot that's going to be less trauma to a certain body part is only going to result in a bogged down,f****** boring ass game to watch, and it's going to send mixed messages to both people who play and watch hockey. It's quite ridiculous. Leave it alone. Banning hits to the head is not going to make hockey a safe sport. Banning fighting is not going to make hockey a safe sport. Nothing is going to make hockey a safe sport. All of these rules, however, are going to make hockey not "hockey" but somethingf****** completely different.
Edited by Shoreline, 03 September 2011 - 03:58 PM.