There’s this one guy who–obviously knowing nothing about the sport of hockey–weighs in on the Chris Simon atrocity from last night’s Rangers/Isles game.
Go read it.
Done? Cool. Well, allow me to retort:
In basketball and football, the players have no weapons other than their fists and feet… and maybe their heads. I’m assuming his football is what we call soccer–*ahem* Zinedine Zidane–but it very well could be American Football on the gridiron. The distinction is irrelevant. If they were armed with sticks, he’s claiming those players would never hit another player with a handled instrument out of frustration–or, worse, anger?
I call bullshit.
Let me join a “footie” scrum (a place I’ve never been) with him, frustrate his efforts physically, then chop him hard in the ribs with a length of wood, and see if he doesn’t turn around and try to kick my ass with his own weapon.
What’s his opinion on the inherent violence in lacrosse, another full-contact sport where the players wield sticks? I can only wonder.
This “Tyler Duffy” guy is confused. Worse, he is conflating Chris Simon’s actions with acceptable standards in the National Hockey League. Worst, he’s claiming that tacit acceptance of fighting in hockey breeds a “culture of violence”.
First, who’s he to say that there’s tacit acceptance of fighting in hockey? The NHL rulebook has eight full pages addressing the issue, with increasing punishment doled out for increasing violence. Sure, they start at five minutes off the ice, but the rulebook also calls for expulsion, suspension, fines for the player and coaching staff, and does not preclude legal prosecution. This league-mandated punishment increases commensurate with the offense.
What Chris Simon did last night is inexcusable and reprehensible. He is suspended without pay indefinitely pending a hearing by the league. I would not be surprised, nor disappointed, if his punishment resulted in legal charges lodged against him.
His actions do not represent an acceptable part of hockey, on any level. Every hockey fan, every hockey player, and every hockey league administrator–all of them carrying their “cavalier attitude” in their hip pocket–realizes this fact.
We leave it to the uneducated, casual observer to cry “Injustice!” where justice has yet to be considered.