I know I said I would do a Q and A today but luckily for all of you who didn’t get to submit questions I read an article this morning by one Mr. Steve Simmons. The subject of the article was eliminating fighting due to the long term effects on the players that fight. If you haven’t read it you can find it here. Before I say anything I do feel bad for all those dealing with the long term effects and it is incredibly sad to hear these stories but I believe that Simmons is wrong.
My first issue with Simmons is his insulting mention of Don Cherry. First of all Don has more hockey experience than Simmons could every dream of having and to insult a man who is so respected not only in Simmons’s city but his country as well is a bad idea in general. Second of all Don hasn’t ignored these stories he honours and respects these fighters more than anyone and for Simmons to question that is the height of disrespect.
The other issue I have with this article is that Steve seems to think that fighting is the only thing that can cause life-altering injuries and sad stories. What about Blake Geoffrion who retired at the age of 25 due to an injury from a bad hit? What about Chris Pronger who has been out since November 2011 due to post-concussion syndrome because of hits? How about the 70 games worth of suspensions that were results of hits to the head (and this is not counting the Thornton suspension)? Fighting is not the biggest problem in hockey and to think that eliminating it is the solution to the concussion problem is naive (and this Steve is coming from a person who is probably less than half your age).
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comment box below, on twitter, and on facebook. Also don’t forget to submit your questions for the Q and A which will be tomorrow, if there is anything I haven’t talked about that you want to know my opinion on don’t be afraid to ask!