Headshots, Headshots, Headshots

Why is it that hitting to the head has become such an issue in today’s NHL over the last two or three years?

The basic argument on this subject is that the players are bigger, faster, and stronger than ever because of new technology in equipment and the sciences behind training.

If that’s the case, why on earth aren’t they smarter hockey players?

It’s a wonder how these players, who are making millions of dollars and have been playing hockey at a high level for a large portion of their lives, can be coming around the net for a wrap-around or cutting into the trolley tracks with their heads down looking at the puck, while knowing that there is a bruising D-man coming to put them on the seat of their pants.

Craig Weller is a perfect example of this.

This is going to be looked at as a cheap shot, and wrongly so. Jordin Tootoo is doing what he’s paid to do, play hockey. He sees that there is a spot where he can take a man off the puck, and ensures that happens by doing it as fast and as powerfully as he can. That’s hockey.

If anyone wants to call that, or especially the now infamous Steve Downie hit on Dean McAmmond a headshot, what about this hit from Scott Stevens on Paul Kariya?

Hmm … nobody every complained about that one.

There is no problem with the suspension laid down on Jesse Boulerice. That was a stick to the face, completely outside the rules, and always has been.

But when the good, solid, shoulder-to-the-head bodychecks start getting suspenions, it’s going to take away the reputation of the players who are so respected because of the war that goes on for 60 minutes night after night on the ice.

They are paid millions of dollars to entertain the fans, and the most entertaining plays are goals, big saves, and huge hits.

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One Response

  1. You are bang on ScottyMac.

    No where in the rule books does it say that head shots are illegal. The only two rules that govern this type of hit, is either charging, when a player strides to gather speed to make a hit(or his feet leave the ground to make the hit), or elbowing, if the player uses his elbow to make the hit. If it isn’t either of the above, the hit is clean as a whistle.

    Also, no where does it say if you are willing to lay out a huge hit on an unsuspecting player you should have to fight the next goon that rolls around. If you lay out the mammoth hit, you shouldn’t be labelled a wimp, or cheap just because you didn’t fight. In fact, if you can lay out a goliath hit, you are far the opposite of a wimp.

    Case in point, Steve Moore. He laid out an unexpected Marcus Naslund just like Stevens laid out Kariya and Tootoo laid out Weller. No player should be FORCED to fight, just because they made the big hit. Moore was just doing his job, as was Stevens, as was Tootoo.

    The players who are hit should just take it as a learning experience. Keep your head up. One big hit and they won’t be doing that again.

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