The NHL Playoffs are full of drama, and fast play, but it seems that the NHL has made it a point to make sure fights do not happen. Fighting in the NHL is not about punching another man in the face; it’s about providing a spark, and changing the momentum.
I’ve watch a good amount of this years Playoffs, and one thing I haven’t watched is a good fight. There has been hard hits, dirty hits, and crotch grabbing. No one fights. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but I think the NHL may bring some of these series to a boiling point by stopping everything before it starts. I am not advocating bench clearing brawls, or planed fights, but in the heat of the moment a fight can change everything.
Teams are very careful not to put them selves at a disadvantage, and sometime fighting can do that, but shouldn’t that be up to the players and teams? In watching the games this post season it seems like the NHL officials are getting more involved in the game itself. They are jumping in between players faster, and sometimes with no real cause. “Let them play” , and if they want to Let Them Fight. Until the NHL makes a rule that completely takes fighting out of the game they need to expect fights to happen.
GIF Via @PeteBlackburn
Sometimes there is cause to stop a fight before it happens. Yesterday afternoon is a good example, Zdeno Chara and Brendan Smith were jawing at each other, and it seems like Smith may have lost his mind in challenging Chara. The Linesmen stepped in. One one hand they may have saved Smith from a lot of pain, but on the other hand if they want to go , let them go.
So, I ask you. Is the NHL taking fighting out of the game, or are they just being careful?