Open ice headshots VS. boarding
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11-10-2008, 08:50 PM
Join Date: May 2005
An open ice hit versus a boarding call is the difference between "charging" and "boarding". In the case of hitting from behind (anywhere) the premise is that the person hit was deemed unaware and thus defenseless.
In both cases the rules allow discretion to factor in two things: Did the player being hit take all the necessary precautions? Did the hitter take advantage of the situation?
After the sauer hit Bettman himself defended that type of hit by saying that we would have to change the rules, which really is preposterous. The rule allows the ref to decide.
Bottom line? The league like the "big hit" classically called the "clean" hit. In many cases it is a direct assault on the head, but they will say that the player being hit should bear responsibility to protect himself.
Where the train goes off the track in my opinion is that the league is saying that in some justifiable situations it is just fine to rattle a guys brain off the boards/glass. Apparently if you look the wrong way you are careless and it is more your fault if you suffer serious injury. Odd that the hitter taking advantage part of the rules seldom carries much weight
BTW: In Jr hockey there is a separate penalty for blows to the head. If the league adopted this rule the "big hit" would have to be much more careful, but that would take all the excitement out the the hits. Just like the mad dash on icing plays. Nobody would like hockey if guys didn't risk life and limb to chase down a puck.
I think the NHL has a personality disorder
Last edited by JrHockeyFan: 11-10-2008 at
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