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09-02-2011, 12:18 PM
  #126
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Originally Posted by bipolarhabfan View Post
Even with fighters cheap shots happen. They do not act as deterrents.

IMHO, fighting needs to be abolished. It is antiquated and really does not add much to the experience of the game. I watch hockey for speed and skill and not for thuggery. I can watch the UFC for that.

As for the NHLPA, the organization is incompetent. The goal of a union is to take care of their members, financially AND health wise. With the number of cheap shots in the league and the recent deaths to four tough guys (Tom Cavanagh is the other) they are not taking care of the latter.

The image of the league in the last few years has taken a beating and things do not look like they will improve anytime soon. They have not decided to rectify anything at ATM. I have seen Sloths move faster than the NHL to accomplish something important.
That is unfortunately the case.

the NHL had numerous occasions to solve the problem, and in the last few years we have seen many players being hurt by cheap shots from behind and to the head. Even the Crosby's injury is due to dirty shots. Steckel knew what he was doing. Hedman too. And let's not start on the Chara on MaxPac case. That was premeditated and just plain violent.

Let's just hope that after these three summer's deaths and with the arrival of Shanahan, it will raise the proper questions and find the right solutions.

NHL hockey is getting sickening to watch.

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09-02-2011, 06:07 PM
  #127
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What shocks me the most about this is that he had a wife and two young kids. If you are going to have kids, it is your responsibility to be around for as long as possible to raise them and provide for them. He should have sought counceling, taken medication, or done anything so that he didn't have to chose this option. Having kids is a big responsibility, and should not be taken lightly.

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09-02-2011, 06:17 PM
  #128
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What shocks me the most about this is that he had a wife and two young kids. If you are going to have kids, it is your responsibility to be around for as long as possible to raise them and provide for them. He should have sought counceling, taken medication, or done anything so that he didn't have to chose this option. Having kids is a big responsibility, and should not be taken lightly.
A man who takes his own life has a lot more going than we will ever know, but I doubt the man was in a rational state of mind when he hung himself. To me, he was likely so saddened/depressed he really lost all ability to think coherently. He seemed like a great guy from every account I've seen, his kids were probably furthest from his mind, or maybe he was so down on himself he thought he was doing his kids a favor. We will likely never know just how much he was suffering.

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09-02-2011, 06:23 PM
  #129
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Of course it's good hockey. You've got basically 6 or 7 teams icing the best talent in the world for a couple of weeks not 30 teams 'filling out' rosters after 3 or 4 good players per team for 80 - 100 games a year. You can bet there would be fighting if those 6 or 7 teams played each other more than once or twice every four years and I bet you the hockey/entertainment would be even better.
Exactly, the NHL isn't the Olympics and will never be. It's like me saying the shot put is more exciting at the Olympics. Or that swimming, they sure put on a show at the Olympics lol

Fighting will not be banned from hockey.

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09-02-2011, 06:25 PM
  #130
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Belak was always fun and a happy go-lucky attitude. Maybe all that was just a front he put up to compensate the fact that he was really miserable? I'm not saying he was fake or anything but that stuff happens subconsciously.

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09-02-2011, 06:29 PM
  #131
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Originally Posted by Kriss E View Post
I'm probably a bigger fan of MMA than you. I enjoy watching two guys fight and display their amazing skills. I don't enjoy watching street fights or bar fights. There used to be a purpose to fighting in the NHL and it's always been part of the sport. But for quite some time now, this has died. It's pretty obvious but change is the toughest thing to do in every day life, so some people just can't see that.
Some actually still believe fighting nowadays somehow protects players.
That just shows how badly some are in denial.

Fighting in the NHL is solely an entertaining aspect. I don't watch games to see a fight. I don't care for it. I will watch every PPV of the UFC along with some other promotions like dream, strikeforce and K-1 so I can enjoy some real fighting. Watching two guys on skate try pounding each other missing 90% of their punches and then buckling down is freaking idiotic.
Now, some are dying from substance abuse and suicide more so than ever. I don't give a crap what happens to UFC fighters, it's not the NHL and they're in the sport of fighting. You don't see too many skilled players commit suicide too. What's your point??. That's the dumbest comment I've ever read.
Not that I disagree but he has a point in that people are really jumping to conclusions. Just because an anomaly of 3 fighters dieing/suicide happens doesn't mean it's related to the fighting.

Likely just the personality types that go with people who are tough (fighters) they wouldn't want to be a ***** and go see a psychologist etc. (in their eyes a ***** not mine)

Now I'm not saying if 10 more guys randomly drop dead and they're all fighters that it's jumping to conclusions but 3 guys... it could be a total fluke and for another decade another player dies. It could be a pattern and something dangerous is happening. Right now deciding on either one is jumping to conclusions imo. Now that isn't to say the NHL shouldn't do some research or maybe start a program to help retirees adapt to no longer being a player, programs for player mental health with total anonymity, potentially even some kind of evaluation every year or something. Of course preventative measures can be put in place regardless of if it's a trend. But why are people jumping to conclusions? Mental health isn't automatically linked to fighting, concussions etc. Plenty of people are find mentally after a concussion, some aren't. And even for the people who do have a mental health issue after one why are we automatically assuming that it's related? What happened was terrible three good enforcers died this summer. Sometimes an anomaly happens though, so far it's the exception not the rule.

I won't care if they abolish fighting but I don't mind if they keep it either. Head shots are far more important in my opinion. Players choose to fight. They don't choose to take a cheap shot in the head.

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09-02-2011, 07:36 PM
  #132
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Originally Posted by neofury View Post
Not that I disagree but he has a point in that people are really jumping to conclusions. Just because an anomaly of 3 fighters dieing/suicide happens doesn't mean it's related to the fighting.

Likely just the personality types that go with people who are tough (fighters) they wouldn't want to be a ***** and go see a psychologist etc. (in their eyes a ***** not mine)

Now I'm not saying if 10 more guys randomly drop dead and they're all fighters that it's jumping to conclusions but 3 guys... it could be a total fluke and for another decade another player dies. It could be a pattern and something dangerous is happening. Right now deciding on either one is jumping to conclusions imo. Now that isn't to say the NHL shouldn't do some research or maybe start a program to help retirees adapt to no longer being a player, programs for player mental health with total anonymity, potentially even some kind of evaluation every year or something. Of course preventative measures can be put in place regardless of if it's a trend. But why are people jumping to conclusions? Mental health isn't automatically linked to fighting, concussions etc. Plenty of people are find mentally after a concussion, some aren't. And even for the people who do have a mental health issue after one why are we automatically assuming that it's related? What happened was terrible three good enforcers died this summer. Sometimes an anomaly happens though, so far it's the exception not the rule.

I won't care if they abolish fighting but I don't mind if they keep it either. Head shots are far more important in my opinion. Players choose to fight. They don't choose to take a cheap shot in the head.
I'm not jumping to any conclusions. I think fighting should be banned because it brings absolutely nothing to the game. Before, we could hang on to the protector image, but with the amount of cheap shots and concussions growing incessantly, that theory gets thrown out right out the window.
The three deaths is like icing on the cake. If fighting had been abolished a few years ago, maybe these guys have a different path.


Last edited by Kriss E: 09-02-2011 at 07:45 PM.
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09-02-2011, 08:20 PM
  #133
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Actually,that's false. There are several instances of players getting destroyed despite teams having tough guys.

Look at Boston...despite having "protectors"

Bergeron..head shotted twice
Savard...head shotted three times
Krecji...head shotted one time
Horton head shotted one

Look at Pittsburgh despite having Rupp and Godard

Crosby head shot twice in two weeks

look at the habs the year they had Laraque, Komisarek and Kostopoulos...Andrei Kostitsyn got ***** by Sauer.

There are soooo many instances which show that the whole idea of protection is a myth. In fact there is very little to support other wise.

Last year, Lucic toughness did not stop an Atlanta defensemen from almost taking his head off.

Look at what Chara did to Grabovski despite the Leafs having a team full of fighters.

Cooke on McDonaugh. Lapierre's dick move to Nichol. There are several instances that show that protection is only a myth.
Everything you mentioned is all in today's NHL, which is my point. The fighters are mostly not allowed to do their job, the instigator rule has taken out the 'honesty' in the game. The NHLPA is a joke, they have no respect for each other.

Guess how many times Gretzkey, Yzerman and the past great ones would have lasted in today's game? I bet Wayne would have had years cut off his career if Semenko, Brown and Messier didn't impose their fists on anyone who dared cheap shot their star players. Ask Yzerman how important Probert was, you'll get the same answer.

The league needs to sort this **** out once and for all.

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09-02-2011, 08:28 PM
  #134
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Originally Posted by Kriss E View Post
I'm probably a bigger fan of MMA than you. I enjoy watching two guys fight and display their amazing skills. I don't enjoy watching street fights or bar fights. There used to be a purpose to fighting in the NHL and it's always been part of the sport. But for quite some time now, this has died. It's pretty obvious but change is the toughest thing to do in every day life, so some people just can't see that.
Some actually still believe fighting nowadays somehow protects players.
That just shows how badly some are in denial.

Fighting in the NHL is solely an entertaining aspect. I don't watch to see a fight. I don't care for it. I will watch every PPV of the UFC along with some other promotions like dream, strikeforce and K-1 so I can enjoy some real fighting. Watching two guys on skate try pounding each other missing 90% of their punches and then buckling down is freaking idiotic.
Now, some are dying from substance abuse and suicide more so than ever. I don't give a crap what happens to UFC fighters, it's not the NHL and they're in the sport of fighting. You don't see too many skilled players commit suicide too. What's your point??. That's the dumbest comment I've ever read.
I don't get how someone would like UFC and boxing not enjoy fighting in hockey? If anything fighting in hockey is more genuine, it comes out of nowhere and you never see it coming. While boxing and UFC can be a drag sometime, especially when you're at your fifth long match of the night because it's ONLY fighting . What I enjoy about hockey is the chaotic aspect that other sports do not have. It's more creative, less structured and anything can happen at any given moments whether it's scoring, hitting, someone fall into the goalie, someone makes a great pass that confound the opponants and yes random fighting. I don't like enforcers because of this. Especially in the style of Laraque in that it's too pre-determined. But I enjoy to see fighting when it comes naturaly.

To me 70s hockey was the greatest hockey there ever was and the rivalries between the Bruins and Habs will always be the hallmark. Skills, strength, tougness, hate, love, beauty, chaos, these matchs had it all. And no players ever died from those times.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Habs View Post
Everything you mentioned is all in today's NHL, which is my point. The fighters are mostly not allowed to do their job, the instigator rule has taken out the 'honesty' in the game. The NHLPA is a joke, they have no respect for each other.

Guess how many times Gretzkey, Yzerman and the past great ones would have lasted in today's game? I bet Wayne would have had years cut off his career if Semenko, Brown and Messier didn't impose their fists on anyone who dared cheap shot their star players. Ask Yzerman how important Probert was, you'll get the same answer.

The league needs to sort this **** out once and for all.
Bear in mind I enjoy fighting, that's a great point.


Last edited by Crimson Skorpion: 09-02-2011 at 08:34 PM. Reason: Merged
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09-02-2011, 08:57 PM
  #135
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The stigma that can be somewhat attached to mental illness is at the root here, and for a so called tough guy in the world of pro sports to have to go to the Dr and tell the doc how he is " feeling " would be too much for the macho type of rock em sock em type of hockey player...

This fun loving well adjusted guy, obviously had alot of issues, and everyone missed them...very sad indeed. Not just Belak, but Rypien and Boodgard,and this situation, will force the league to deal with this stuff, and both the league and PA need to man up, and make sure all of these guys get counselling during their careers, and after the game is over for them...truly tragic for those families involved.
Just to add to that, there was a former BC Lions player by the name of Ryan Thelwell who also battled depression but he kept it to himself. He eventually went public with his issues, and once he did, he was astounded by the amount of personal greetings and phone calls he got from other players who are going through the exact same thing.

I think you are right. There is a certain macho culture in violent sports that does not make it easy to come out and express your issues, but I also think its a problem with society in general. Many people with depression seem to fight it on their own which probably makes it worse.

I dont want to come across as some expert in the field, because I'm not.... but that's my feeling

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09-02-2011, 09:03 PM
  #136
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I have a feeling that in the end this will not be ruled a suicide, but rather an accidental death. It just doesn't mesh in my head based on what so many close to him have said. Regardless of how it happened, it is sad that his children will be growing up without their father, the same as others that have lost theirs in various ways.

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09-02-2011, 09:52 PM
  #137
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I don't get how someone would like UFC and boxing not enjoy fighting in hockey? If anything fighting in hockey is more genuine, it comes out of nowhere and you never see it coming. While boxing and UFC can be a drag sometime, especially when you're at your fifth long match of the night because it's ONLY fighting . What I enjoy about hockey is the chaotic aspect that other sports do not have. It's more creative, less structured and anything can happen at any given moments whether it's scoring, hitting, someone fall into the goalie, someone makes a great pass that confound the opponants and yes random fighting. I don't like enforcers because of this. Especially in the style of Laraque in that it's too pre-determined. But I enjoy to see fighting when it comes naturaly.

To me 70s hockey was the greatest hockey there ever was and the rivalries between the Bruins and Habs will always be the hallmark. Skills, strength, tougness, hate, love, beauty, chaos, these matchs had it all. And no players ever died from those times.
You enjoy more ''genuine'' fights. To me it's an idiotic and macho thing. Do you get excited when you see two people fight in the streets?? It's very genuine!
I watch hockey to see skills being displayed. I have no interest in watching Lappy fight Talbot or Begin fight Thornton or Pouliot fight Krejci. I can pass up on all these stupid, useless fights. You're a hockey player, then play hockey. The fighting aspect has no influence on the game other than entertainment. There's no use for it.

I want to watch a fight, I'll watch the best fighters fight each other. I don't enjoy watching two guys swing each other around by their jersey, miss on 99% of their punches thrown until refs come in.

And ya, 70's hockey was entertaining, and fighting actually had a reason back then. We're in 2011, that's 41 years ago, time to move on.

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09-02-2011, 10:20 PM
  #138
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You enjoy more ''genuine'' fights. To me it's an idiotic and macho thing. Do you get excited when you see two people fight in the streets?? It's very genuine!
I watch hockey to see skills being displayed. I have no interest in watching Lappy fight Talbot or Begin fight Thornton or Pouliot fight Krejci. I can pass up on all these stupid, useless fights. You're a hockey player, then play hockey. The fighting aspect has no influence on the game other than entertainment. There's no use for it.

I want to watch a fight, I'll watch the best fighters fight each other. I don't enjoy watching two guys swing each other around by their jersey, miss on 99% of their punches thrown until refs come in.

And ya, 70's hockey was entertaining, and fighting actually had a reason back then. We're in 2011, that's 41 years ago, time to move on.
I disagree with everything here. Most people, hockey people disagree. I'll leave the decision to them. If the PA thinks fighting should go, I'll listen, until then I don't think it's gonna happen or should happen. I would like to see the instigator removed and see if it has any effects at all. I doubt it would help any, but I don't think the answer is completely jumping the gun and changing the game over 3 relatively isolated incidences that happened to be within one off season. We don't even know if fighting attributed to these deaths at all. Maybe they were habitual drug users that had nothing to do with fighting in hockey. We don't know enough to jump to these premature conclusions. An investigation is called for, then make decisions based on the findings, but not until then.

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09-02-2011, 10:58 PM
  #139
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I have a feeling that in the end this will not be ruled a suicide, but rather an accidental death. It just doesn't mesh in my head based on what so many close to him have said.
Not to sound like a jerk, but do you mean a death like David Carradine?

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09-02-2011, 11:13 PM
  #140
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Not to sound like a jerk, but do you mean a death like David Carradine?
to be honest, that's the feeling i got when i read this tweet:


"Wade Belak did not kill himself and any suggestion to the contrary is simply wrong. As time passes, the truth will emerge. RIP my friend. Can't say much about Wades death but when it is all said and done, I believe that this will be ruled a horrible accident. Sorry 4 vagueness."

http://twitter.com/#!/MarkSeidel

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09-02-2011, 11:17 PM
  #141
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The sad part here is the family he leaves behind.

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09-03-2011, 12:40 AM
  #142
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to be honest, that's the feeling i got when i read this tweet:


"Wade Belak did not kill himself and any suggestion to the contrary is simply wrong. As time passes, the truth will emerge. RIP my friend. Can't say much about Wades death but when it is all said and done, I believe that this will be ruled a horrible accident. Sorry 4 vagueness."

http://twitter.com/#!/MarkSeidel
Interesting, thanks for the link.

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09-03-2011, 01:53 AM
  #143
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Originally Posted by Ayatollah Chowmeini View Post
to be honest, that's the feeling i got when i read this tweet:


"Wade Belak did not kill himself and any suggestion to the contrary is simply wrong. As time passes, the truth will emerge. RIP my friend. Can't say much about Wades death but when it is all said and done, I believe that this will be ruled a horrible accident. Sorry 4 vagueness."

http://twitter.com/#!/MarkSeidel
Nothing against you AC, or anybody else who has found this tidbit interesting, but it's really important to check out the source of information like this.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=340104

At first glance, Seidel seems trustworthy as the guy's a long-time scout and is employed in the hockey world, but he has also been exposed as a guy who's capable of being willfully deceitful in his reporting.

When news of Belak's death first hit, a lot of people were claiming there was no way that he could have been suicidal let alone depressed based on what little they've seen of him. Belak's mother revealed that he has dealt with and been medicated for depression for years, proving that initial gut-reaction wrong.

People are still struggling with the idea of a father of two committing suicide even if he is depressed and are reaching for some explanation that gets around that horrible idea. Mark Seidel conveniently and vaguely tweets something that supports that sentiment and it begins to spread like wildfire on the web.

I'm not sure how Belak died and I won't claim I have any more information than the rest of you. However, at this point in time, the horribly sad narrative of a man losing a long battle with depression seems to be the one that makes the most sense in light of what people closest to Belak have said.

Seidel's speculation that there some kind of sordid accident took place while offering no proof or details strikes me as either an act of severe denial, or a despicable and morbid attempt at gaining attention on the off-chance that he's right. Either way, at this point in time it's uncalled for and not worthy of much credence or discussion.


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09-03-2011, 05:09 AM
  #144
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Not to sound like a jerk, but do you mean a death like David Carradine?
exactly

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09-03-2011, 06:25 AM
  #145
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I don't get how someone would like UFC and boxing not enjoy fighting in hockey? If anything fighting in hockey is more genuine, it comes out of nowhere and you never see it coming. While boxing and UFC can be a drag sometime, especially when you're at your fifth long match of the night because it's ONLY fighting . What I enjoy about hockey is the chaotic aspect that other sports do not have. It's more creative, less structured and anything can happen at any given moments whether it's scoring, hitting, someone fall into the goalie, someone makes a great pass that confound the opponants and yes random fighting. I don't like enforcers because of this. Especially in the style of Laraque in that it's too pre-determined. But I enjoy to see fighting when it comes naturaly. .
simple, and I'm the same boat as Kriss on this, love boxing, MMA and all... but really, when you see/saw the best fighters in the world, from Sugar Ray Leonard to GSP... NHL fights become retarded...

wether it's genuine and whatnot makes no difference, the fight itself is "stupidly retarded"... when the "winner" have connected once or twice during the fight - usually on the helmet, you know damn well it isnt really a fight you just watched...

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09-03-2011, 06:36 AM
  #146
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simple, and I'm the same boat as Kriss on this, love boxing, MMA and all... but really, when you see/saw the best fighters in the world, from Sugar Ray Leonard to GSP... NHL fights become retarded...

wether it's genuine and whatnot makes no difference, the fight itself is "stupidly retarded"... when the "winner" have connected once or twice during the fight - usually on the helmet, you know damn well it isnt really a fight you just watched...
Well if what you say is true, it would be much more unlikely for these deaths to be associated with fighting at all. There should be more fighting related deaths in the ufc/boxing, but there isn't any that I can think of.

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09-03-2011, 06:41 AM
  #147
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Well if what you say is true, it would be much more unlikely for these deaths to be associated with fighting at all. There should be more fighting related deaths in the ufc/boxing, but there isn't any that I can think of.
I don't think the two are comparable. Fighters in the UFC/boxing are fighters whose sole purpose in their sport is indeed to fight. That's the reason why they train. Fighters in hockey are hockey players who could only make the NHL because of fighting. They weren't fighters at 15-16 years old. Many of them were good players at that point even.

When enforcers in the NHL score a goal or two here or there, they often get (rightfully) criticised for trying to become finesse players over the next half dozen to dozen games. Laraque was frequently criticised on this front: any time he'd score a goal, he'd get hungrier for another, and start driving the net, playing a finesse game, completely neglecting his enforcing duties. This wasn't limited to Laraque: many enforcers in the game did this. Even 'mean' tough guys like Brashear were criticised for this once in awhile. I suspect the reason for this is that these enforcers wanted to be more in the NHL, and any time they enjoyed any offensive success, this desire took hold.

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09-03-2011, 06:52 AM
  #148
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Well if what you say is true, it would be much more unlikely for these deaths to be associated with fighting at all. There should be more fighting related deaths in the ufc/boxing, but there isn't any that I can think of.
au contraire. UFC/Boxers are paid, known, and popular because of their fighting (not just from fans)... the best of them are the poster boys of their respective sports, they're also respected among their peers...

NHL enforcers are not and never will be the poster boy of the league, not even of their team... they also dont have much respect from their peers (those who signed elsewhere as UFA or were traded ? not a single comment from their ex-teammates or something)... they dont have much respect from their coach either, most let their fighters rot on the bench for most of the game and get thrown on the ice to play watchdog or beat up on someone... and contrary to a playmaker who misses a few passes in a game (and they do, every one of them, every single game), if the NHL fighter lose too many he'll get thrown under the bus by his coach, opponents and the fans...

there's also the fact that no matter what they do or how much they improve their game, these hockey players are never put on the ice for hockey related reason...

also, boxers/UFC fight alone - 1 on 1, train mostly alone (or with one or two partners top), they also have a full team of trainers, nutricians etc dedicated to them (as opposed to hockey players) so... solitude isnt much of an issue for them...

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09-03-2011, 06:56 AM
  #149
ECWHSWI
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Originally Posted by Mike8 View Post
I don't think the two are comparable. Fighters in the UFC/boxing are fighters whose sole purpose in their sport is indeed to fight. That's the reason why they train. Fighters in hockey are hockey players who could only make the NHL because of fighting. They weren't fighters at 15-16 years old. Many of them were good players at that point even.

When enforcers in the NHL score a goal or two here or there, they often get (rightfully) criticised for trying to become finesse players over the next half dozen to dozen games. Laraque was frequently criticised on this front: any time he'd score a goal, he'd get hungrier for another, and start driving the net, playing a finesse game, completely neglecting his enforcing duties. This wasn't limited to Laraque: many enforcers in the game did this. Even 'mean' tough guys like Brashear were criticised for this once in awhile. I suspect the reason for this is that these enforcers wanted to be more in the NHL, and any time they enjoyed any offensive success, this desire took hold.
can you imagine, you're a HOCKEY player, and you get criticised for making good hockey plays...

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09-03-2011, 07:07 AM
  #150
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Originally Posted by ECWHSWI View Post
au contraire. UFC/Boxers are paid, known, and popular because of their fighting (not just from fans)... the best of them are the poster boys of their respective sports, they're also respected among their peers...

NHL enforcers are not and never will be the poster boy of the league, not even of their team... they also dont have much respect from their peers (those who signed elsewhere as UFA or were traded ? not a single comment from their ex-teammates or something)... they dont have much respect from their coach either, most let their fighters rot on the bench for most of the game and get thrown on the ice to play watchdog or beat up on someone... and contrary to a playmaker who misses a few passes in a game (and they do, every one of them, every single game), if the NHL fighter lose too many he'll get thrown under the bus by his coach, opponents and the fans...

there's also the fact that no matter what they do or how much they improve their game, these hockey players are never put on the ice for hockey related reason...

also, boxers/UFC fight alone - 1 on 1, train mostly alone (or with one or two partners top), they also have a full team of trainers, nutricians etc dedicated to them (as opposed to hockey players) so... solitude isnt much of an issue for them...
Whether you're the poster of boy of your sport is kinda irrelevant, especially when your getting punched in the head, knocked unconscious, then hit again and woken up.

The argument seems to be after this Belak death that fighting in hockey needs to be removed, why again? Getting a broken orbital bone or hematoma are fairly common in ufc/boxing, probably more likely to cause concussions/head injury than a hockey fight. The only saving grace maybe in the ufc/boxing you have adequate time to recover, longer layoffs between fights ect, but their fights are much more detrimental to ones health.

If your argument is hockey fighters are a dying breed and they no longer benefit their teams, that's a different discussion, one I don't really agree with, I can see the rationale, but wonder why is this being brought up now?

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