Violence in hockey

by Laurence Morin-Emond on September 25, 2013 - 9:52pm

Hockey pre-season finish on September 29th; every teams will have played seven games. Even if it’s only the pre-games, players don’t give their place; they played physical, hard and intense.


National Hockey League‘s (NHL) chief player disciplinarian, Brendan Shanahan, already had job on this new hockey season. Shanahan had to suspend 5 players. Before making a decision, he have to analyses all the play and how the players are positioned, before the hit.

The first player who has been suspended this year, is Adam Erne. He voluntary hit the Saint-Louis Blues player at the blue line. He have been suspended three games.

Teemu Pulkkienen has voluntary take speed to hit the Chicago Blackhawks player, Mike Kostka, who directly get violently hit in the board. Four games suspension.

Zack Kassian has been suspended five games, for highstick on Sam Gagner. The Edmonton Oilers player’s probably broken jaw because of it.

On same day of Sam Gagner, his teemates Taylor Hall has been hit at the head by Dale Weise, who get three games suspension.

Phil Kessel of Toronto Maple Leafs, gets a 3 games suspension for slashing, at two times. First time against the Philadelphia Flyers and second time against the Buffalo Sabres.

You can see the videos of suspensions here (with Shanahan explications):


During the negotiations of last year lockout, the players mentions to the NHL personal that the majority of the players wanted to adopt a rules against the hogh and dangerous hit. Just by the pre-season game, we saw that some players are not against those hits and still want this sort of violence. Plus, some players hasn’t been suspended, per example, Jordan Nollan on Rusty Klesla. It looks like certain players completely pass their frustration on the other players.

Most of the time, the hit at the high of the head will cause a concussion at the victim.  Studies are currently in course to show that concussion can have long time consequences. Repetitive concussions can also have repercussions on human memory.   

Personally, I was watching TSN on Monday and they pass the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) highlights and every games they pass, each one had a battle or/and a several hit. There’s a popular supposition; first, hockey players learn how to hit when they are young, and as a hockey fan, they watch NHL and QMJHL players make dangerous hit and as fan, they would want to make like their idols, that’s why there’s still a lot of head hit. But if the NHL would finally accept to create a new rule against this, will it help or not?


I agree with you that that there are to many dangerous hits and hits to the head in the NHL. But hockey is a violent sport, and the hard hits and fights are all part of the game. The league should create new rules for dangerous hits but they should not over do it, since it would kill the flow of the game. Fans come to the games for entertainment not for the refs to blow a whistle every 2seconds...

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