Let's be honest, the only reason people defend fighting is because they want to watch fights. There's no statistics on cheap shots that I'm aware of, but I suspect the frequency hasn't changed because of the instigator rule or the refs or anything like that. In fact, and this is just based on my own experience of watching hockey from the eighties on, I believe cheap shot have drastically declined.
If injuries are up, particularly ones like Datsyuk suffered, it's likely because the game is so much faster and the players so much stronger. The game is changing, because the players are getting better.
Fighting in my opinion is an just a useless distraction from the game that should be abandoned with other sport antiquities like segregated baseball teams.
Agree & disagree here...
I do enjoy watching a good scrap - especially if it's in the 'heat of the moment' where 2 opponents have been at each other for some time, and they want to get it off their chest so to speak...Another enjoyable moment is where a d-bag gets his lunch fed to him after he takes a cheap shot.
I'm honestly indifferent with the 'staged' fights...Those I can live without.
The NHLPA still want fighting to remain in the game, and in years past - many tuff guys felt their presence might have thwarted the possibility of their star players from getting roughed up (mind you there's no statistical data to back that up - just the words of former players).
If the league, and players assoc felt it was a distraction - then I'm pretty certain they'd ban fighting from the game at the NHL level...The truth is - many still enjoy the occasional scrap as evidenced when many patrons inside the arena stand when 2 or more players engage in fisticuffs.
To be honest - the older I get the more I'm indifferent (maybe because the Wings are the least likely team to get involved in any altercation on ice) - however I'd prefer a team with a few guys who can throw'em when needed instead of what we saw when Hank got his head rammed against the glass by Weber.
- haroldsnepsts likes this