Blog Entry

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

Posted on: September 30, 2011 4:55 pm
 

By Brian Stubits

Since Brendan Shanahan has taken over, the eradication of head shots in the league has been priority No. 1. Clearly, it is keeping him busy as eight players have been suspended in the last eight days.

Down the priority list is the possibility of removing something else from hockey: fighting. We stress possibility because he didn't come out and say he wants to get rid of it, just that the NHL is "looking at [it] closely."

Specifically, here's what he had to say to CBC show Mansbridge One on One that will air next week.

"We're definitely very serious in making advancements in studying blows to the head; we have to also look at fighting," Shanahan said. "What the final decision is, I can't tell you now. That's something we're obviously going to have to look at, but there's no way we would ever deny that it's not something we're looking at closely."

So far, just about everything Shanahan has done has been almost universally praised. But that would change in a heartbeat if fighting were taken out of the game under his watch. Again, to clarify, in no way is he pushing for it to be removed, just that the league will keep a close eye.

This has become a Lightning rod of a topic this summer after the deaths of three former enforcers, Derek Boogaard, Rick Rypien and Wade Belak. No connection can be drawn between their on-ice roles as fighters and them taking their own lives, but that hasn't stopped plenty of people from doing just that. Three times smells an awful lot like a trend.

We don't want to rehash the discussion on fighting in the sport, that's already been done. We had an informal poll up over the summer and about 75 percent of users are against abolishing fighting.

I sincerely doubt the NHL is much closer to doing anything on fighting in the sport yet, but if nothing else they are scrutinizing it more.

Photo: Getty Images

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Comments

Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: October 1, 2011 2:20 pm
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

Fighting will never be taken out of the game.  Anyone who has ever played knows it's impossible.



Since: Oct 8, 2010
Posted on: October 1, 2011 1:15 pm
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

Whoa boys.  You're heading down the wrong trail. Hard to believe that Shanny is going to be a strong adovate for abolishing fighting.  The article says it's way down on the priority list.  Of course the league has to look into it because of the recent deaths but I just can't foresee fighting banned from the game.



Since: Apr 25, 2008
Posted on: October 1, 2011 12:47 pm
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

,if you get rid of fighting, players will take more cheap shots knowing no one will beat them up.  i will probably watch less hockey, go to fewer games



Since: Mar 30, 2011
Posted on: October 1, 2011 11:53 am
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting



This better be a joke - and a bad one at that



Since: Sep 7, 2011
Posted on: October 1, 2011 11:49 am
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

Might as well let women in the league next if you want to take out fighting!  Reeeedic!



Since: Oct 1, 2011
Posted on: October 1, 2011 11:03 am
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

If fighting is taken out of the NHL then I'll never watch hockey again. Also, don't call it hockey any more just rename the sport soccer on ice.



Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: October 1, 2011 10:54 am
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

Seriously Shanny? Closely looking at fighting as a concern w/blows to the head when both agree to drop the gloves???? This has been a study for years in sports w/Concussions, Fighting etc... In consideration I do believe if you pursue taking fights out of the game you're most certainly going to lose fan base. Fighting is part of Hockey you can't take that away from the sport. These players fully understand risks of the game at any given time or moment. This was an unfortunate off season w/3 big loses cause of related enforced players. Their role is to balance the integrity & to preserve physicality this sport needs. Look into everything but you'll do more damage than good if you pursue  



Since: Jan 29, 2007
Posted on: October 1, 2011 10:13 am
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

Shanahan didn't complain when Bob Probert  and Scott Stevens protected his butt
How many games did Shanahan play with Stevens or Probert?Tongue out
That was my first thought. The answer to that is 0!



Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: October 1, 2011 9:23 am
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting



There's fighting in hockey?



Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: October 1, 2011 8:50 am
 

Shanahan: NHL 'looking closely' at fighting

this is just stupid...... If they were to remove fighting there would be 3-4,000 fans at the game.... The NHL would fold.......


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