The sticks weighed a ton and the skates back then sucked. Slower speeds plus no one is just swinging their stick around wildly.
And kids back then learned early on to keep their sticks down. When noone is wearing a helmet or face shield sticks tend to stay down. When cages and visors start coming into play sticks come up more. Having played for almost 16 years now I can say that for me having a visor or cage on I saw more than my fair share of sticks up around the head. I can count on one hand the times that while not wearing a visor I got clipped by a high stick or puck. On the other hand Ive gone through alot of visors because of scratches from high sticks.
The league I play in now most of the guys are pretty good about keeping their sticks down for the most part. Only been caught once in 4 years, but I am always harping at least once a game to watch sticks. Usually the offender is a guy wearing a full cage. Then ive had teammates who no matter what they wear , their head/face is like a magnet for pucks. Maybe Im just lucky.
"There were far less injuries back when the players didn't wear helmets, let alone face masks or full cages."
Really, what data do you have supporting this. Gordie howe almost died one time when he ran into the boards headfirst without a helmet.
The difference is the appearance that there's more injuries nowadays. The reality is just that there better able to diagnose concussions. Players back then just would have kept playing and a lot of careers were ended back then. Up until the late 80s nobody really knew anything about concussions. Also, watch a tape of old time hockey. There WAY slower There's not even close to the amount of speed that they have now.
So your logical reasoning is that if we took away helmets, there would be less injuries? I'm guessing maybe you don't wear a helmet yourself because clearly you've suffered a brain injury youself with that type of reasoning skills.
That works both ways. If the game is at the point where the players need to be protected from head to toe. Maybe it's time you look at how the game is played.
I agree to an extent. But IMO it all comes back to equipment. Either stop making lighter and lighter hockey sticks or provide equipment to protect players when the sticks inevitably come up.
Originally Posted by stick9
There were far less injuries back when the players didn't wear helmets, let alone face masks or full cages.
Are you sure about that? No doubt you've heard of Ace Bailey being blindsided by Eddie Shore? Back when goalies didn't wear masks, do you think opponents were courteous enough not shoot high for fear of hitting them? Hockey was once a truly barbarous sport. And guys played through lots of serious injuries because if they didn't they could easily lose their roster spot to another guy.
"go back to that, tough sport"
You do realize that people used to have stick fights(actually stand at center ice and try to knock each other's eyes out with the stick and hit each other over the head)....most of this crap happened during the 70s when they tried to use violence to sell the game(which didn't work) to people who didn't care about hockey, but liked seeing people swings sticks at each others heads and try to kill each other. You had bench clearing brawls and fighting was at its maximum in the 70s....generally speaking, the more fighting the more violence. I've even seen a goalie crack a stick over the head of player during a bench clearing brawl who was lying helpless on the ice.....real tough....lol...want to fight?....go become a boxer or ultimate fighter.(and these sports are skilled "martial arts", not just pornographic violence...there's skill involved and are fair man to man) Fighting exists to entertain, how many fights do you think just start because one guys says to the other "time to go".....entertainment....plain and simple. There's a bad culture of violence and lack of sportmanship(ie todd bertuzzi) and fair play in the culture of hockey.
if players get a full cage, we will see what minor hockey is seeing, nothing but headshots, and sticks to the face... i think you would start to see more injuries
Excellent point. And those injuries will be serious ones.
And Ace Bailey type things were not the norm. Those were few and far between. They were certainly a lot less frequent then what we are seeing now that's sparking the talk of full face protection in the NHL.