Blog Entry

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

Posted on: October 6, 2011 10:05 pm
Edited on: October 6, 2011 11:11 pm
DC1By: Adam Gretz

You can probably count Don Cherry as one person that is not a fan of the way Brendan Shanahan is running the NHL's discipline machine.

During his first Coach's Corner of the season on Thursday, Cherry, wearing what appeared to be his best Christmas-themed suit (pictured), sounded off on a number of topics, including the early suspensions handed out during Shanahan's watch, the people that tried to connect the deaths of Wade Belak, Derek Boogaard and Rick Rypien to fighting, and ex-fighters that have blamed post-retirement off-ice problems on fighting.

When asked by his longtime on-air partner, Ron MacLean, if he liked Shanahan's approach to discipline (such as the videos explaining each suspension) Cherry quickly pointed out that he hasn't seen any and doesn't want to, which is kind of like complaining about a book and then refusing to read it.

One of the first points he made was a reference to last year's incident that involved Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara hitting Canadiens forward Max Pacioretty into the turnbuckle along the bench area in Montreal. Cherry went back and looked at the previous game between the two teams and showed how, after scoring a goal, Pacioretty gave Chara a shove and warned young hockey players to "never push the defenseman" after scoring a goal because "they always remember."

The next game, of course, involved Pacioretty leaving on a stretcher. When MacLean asked if Cherry felt that incident was premeditated, he simply responded with, "All I'm saying is he ticked him off and he got it the next game. Leave the defenseman alone after a goal because they always feel it's their fault."

From there, the segment focused on the bad precedent Shanahan is setting by giving players an excuse to not hit their opponents.

He then ran a highlight package of former New Jersey Devils defenseman Scott Stevens crushing people throughout his career -- including his now famous hits on Eric Lindros and Paul Kariya -- and asked how many games Shanahan would have suspended Stevens for those plays.

The answer, of course, is probably quite a few games because many of the hits he featured are now illegal. Rules change. The game changes. Things that were legal 10 years ago no longer are.

He saved his strongest words for the end of the segment when discussing fighting, calling out the people that used the deaths of Boogard, Belak and Rypien as an excuse to push their anti-fighting agenda, and that they all "should be ashamed" of themselves. He closed by calling out former fighters Stu Grimson, Jim Thompson and Chris Nilan as being "turncoats and hypocrites" for suggesting fighters can be more prone to drug and alchohol abuse.

Said Cherry, "You guys, you were fighters, and now you don't want guys to make the same living you did."

You can see the entire seven-minute segment over at CBC.

Photo: CBC

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 15, 2011 4:28 pm
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 15, 2011 4:23 pm
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Since: Oct 7, 2011
Posted on: October 19, 2011 8:20 am

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

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Since: Oct 8, 2011
Posted on: October 8, 2011 6:42 pm

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

Maybe this " New NHL" will be enough to get the idiot off the air. Cherry always pretends he's talking to the kids. The fact is-most hockey dads won't let their kids listen to his loud-mouthed tirades. Grapes- THE EGO TRIP IS OVER!!  You must have had a few concussions earlier in life to make you the wacko that you are!!

Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: October 7, 2011 2:18 pm

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

That being said I do not any 70+ person that like change most of them just don't have the stage Cherry does.

How old are you, just because you may have had a half day today and now you "have the stage" doesn't make what you say any more ignorantSealed Big deal so he may be biased he lives in Toronto and coached the Bruins  its called loyalty. He also like the guys that fight and play old school hockey and that may not be what todays fan wants to hear because they've been told that type of hockey isn't hockey.

What Cherry said wan't baseless he has his reasons and I'm sure they are more than to give ammo to childish porters like you who think only elderly know him. Save your this gen comments for the Chris Brown Katy Perry ThreadsSurprised

Since: Sep 16, 2006
Posted on: October 7, 2011 1:20 pm

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

People first have to understand that Cherry is never going to give any disparaging comments against a Leaf or Bruin player unless what he is commenting on is so absolutely blatant that he doesn't have a choice. So the comments on Chara's hit shouldn't surprise anyone and they certainly shouldn't surprise any Habs fans.

I get his comments on the hitting. I preferred when players had a responsibility to keep their heads up on the ice and that was part of the talent of being an NHL player. But what we know now about concussions it is fair that the NHL has taken the position it is their responsibility to protect the players. That being said I do not any 70+ person that like change most of them just don't have the stage Cherry does.

Since: Mar 23, 2010
Posted on: October 7, 2011 1:06 pm

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

Funny thing. You can tell who enjoys a good game of hockey and those who like to band wagon. The NHL should break off into two leagues. One that allows fighting and checking and the other league that doesn't. I wonder which one would be most entertaining

when its all about entertainment.....then teams should bring their weapons of choice like guns and knives and brass knuckles to the party and pretty girls who clean up the blood after.......that would be entertaining, like in good old rome. 

why is it so wrong to give those guys a little protection on their workplace like everywhere else? its not about "canadian toughness" or "nordamerican gritt", this is an issue about the fact that all those player should have a normal live after they retire from hockey.    &nbs

Since: Sep 25, 2009
Posted on: October 7, 2011 11:51 am

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

Cherry is bang on as usual.  Hitting will disappear from this sport and many others if the wimps continue to the inhabit and attempt to change this world.  They advocate breeding cowards and those who lack aggressiveness.  Don stands up for competition and honest tough-nosed hockey.  We are better off without softies like Lindros who skated around with their heads down.  If fighting was more prevalent, we wouldn't have had cowards like Samuelsson who ended careers of hard working players like Cam Neely.  Don Cherry is trying hard to keep honor in sports.  If you want hockey players to skate around and try to avoid contact (like we saw in last night's Leaf/Habs match), then congrats... embrace your new game and salute your new heroes - the bleeding heart lawyers, the over-reactive doctors and the retired born-again wusses who oversee this once, proud sport.  Don, keep the faith buddy.  There are still a few of us that support you. 

Since: Jul 15, 2009
Posted on: October 7, 2011 11:36 am

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

Perfect. As loud as a Cherry suit, but in many less words. Thanks. 

Since: Mar 23, 2010
Posted on: October 7, 2011 10:54 am

Don Cherry sounds off on hits, ex-fighters

its a new all-time low for this scumbag. he knows his business as an fancy attention wh*re for sure. he was once a man who gave some good advice on television for the kids outthere, now he is just a dumb old man with a puppet on his side.....disgusting!

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