Can't ban hitting in "real hockey" leagues, that'd turn the game more or less into a "show" as the one seen in Slapshot 2, but for players that don't tolerate hitting there are always those adult non-contact leagues.
I hate these post saying ban hitting ! Why ? If you want to be in the NHL you join with a risk ! They're enforcers that will challenge you , their will be best like Ruutu who will hit , and try to tick you off . yeeshhh...
I don't have a problem with hitting. What I have a problem with is these overpaid babies who can't take one.
They put themselves in a bad position, get rocked, then get get up and go wrestle with the guy starting an absolutely pointless fight.
What ever happened to taking his number?
A fair question and I somewhat agree with you. However, I think I know in part what happened.
There was a time where you were KOed and that was that. KOed. It wasn't really considered a big deal. Today, KOed is not the words that come first when you go down. The word is concussion and it carries more long term consequences. The effect is the same but perception has changed.
Throwing your trash in a park after a picnic in 1973 is not the same as throwing it in 2004. The effect is the same but perception has greatly change.
This is what happened to hockey fans and to an extent, players themselves. They know when they get rocked, their career is at risk. They hear about potential repercussions much more than they did in 1973. Concussions are frightening because doctors know so little about the brain. I have been there (not concussions but other health problems) and it is downright frightening when a doctor doesn't seem able to help you and pinpoint a problem.
One constant everybody seems to agree upon is that concussions are likely to make you prone to more concussions, and that the more rest you take the better you will be but the curve of recovery is an individual one and difficult to asess even on a case by case basis.
I think you will agree with me that is not comforting for anybody, especially considering careers are relatively short in the NHL.
Lastly, I disagree with the way you portray the problem. It doesn't affect just overpaid babies but pretty much all NHL players. Yes, sometimes concussions are due to players not protecting themselves but not always. There is not much you can do in certain situations and there are also illegal assaults.
Concussions are a real problem and IMO, it needs to be addressed in this sport until we know more about concussions. We must consider for now that safe is better than sorry and have a zero tolerance policy.
I agree 100% with you that the old times (taking it like a man and taking the number on the back of the jersey) kicked ass. It was great. However, just take a look at those guys in the 70s and you will see they are NO MATCH for the players today physically. They are trained much better, are faster and stronger. The problem is, there is way you can train or "muscle up" your brain.
In other words, the conditioning and training has reached a point that the brain cannot match. We have pushed the limit, which is great for hockey as a whole but has led to this problem. Players get rocked, they skate fast with great momentum and velocity. The shoulder pads are more lethal than they ever were too.
Times have changed.
Doesn't mean we should settle for wussy, non-contact hockey but I think the problem of concussions will not go away and will need to be addressed.
The list goes on. Hitting is a part of the game and injuries happen. Sure its a shame when they do, but I doubt the NFL's going to change to tag football just because some players get hurt. I know lets make boxing gloves filled with a 10 inch think layer of sponge to soften the blow! Hitting is a part of the game and its here to stay.