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11-23-2012, 04:33 PM
5 Mike Rupps
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Originally Posted by CanuckLuck View Post
Stevens played in a time where the 'MO' was to keep your head up or you'll get smoked. His hits would be heavy suspensions now but considering they were just on the edge at the time it's hard to say they were dirty if they were within the rules.
Myth. Not true at all. Guys running other guys was far less common during Stevens' day than now. The year before Shanahan got the discipline gig, it seemed like a guy was being injured on an open-ice hit in each and every game. It was never like that during Stevens' career.

The reason it was never like that is that the penalties for seeking extreme retribution used to be basically nothing. It wasn't out of the ordinary for Rich Pilon to start a stick fight with Mario Lemieux at the end of the game over something Ulf Samuelsson did in the first period. Or for gilmour to karate kick Kasparaitis in the back of the knee over a hipcheck while the Leafs' goon was beating an uninvolved, unwilling Josef Beranek within an inch of his life in the corner. Or for Bob Probert to beat up the goalie then sucker some guy who was being held down by a referee because the guy got a little saucy with Steve Yzerman. You never saw something as extreme as what Trevor Gillies did to Eric Tangradi, but something like the KeitheElbow on Sedin was virtually guaranteed to happen if Sedin hit a former norris winner in the face late.

Result of this is there were ever only about 4 or 5 guys in the league at the same time who would have the balls to, for instance, throw the Aaron Rome hit that permanently screwed up Nathan Horton. The cost of throwing a hit like that used to be really, really high. The guys who were willing to risk paying that price were countable (Kasparaitis, Samuelsson, Suter, Stevens, Marchment, maybe Tinordi...couple others).

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