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What should the NHL do about head shots in hockey?
Thu, March 10, 2011

The NHL is on the hot seat while trying to find a solution to cut down on the number of concussions and bring more respect to the game.

The latest incident, involving Boston Bruins defenceman Zdeno Chara taking out Montreal Canadiens forward Max Pacioretty into a padded arena stanchion, has players, fans and sponsors up in arms over the NHL's decision not to level a suspension and/or fine for the dangerous play.

Pittsburgh Penguins superstar Sidney Crosby, the NHL's poster boy, hasn't played in more than two months after suffering a concussion in the Winter Classic on Jan. 1.

What can the NHL do about preventing concussions in hockey? Is it up to the players to show more respect in the game? Have your say in our forum.

No suspension for Chara


This comment is FULLY MODERATED.


One thing they might do is make the player sit for the full 2 minutes any time he's penalzized for a "head shot."

In other words, if a goal is scored early in the penalty, he still sits. That's the way it used to be for ALL 2-minute minors.

Might give some idiots (like Heatley) pause for thought, especially if going up against a powerhouse PP.
Pragmatic, 2011-03-17 12:52:47

Hockey is not for wimps, They have Tennis and Ping Pong for that. In addressing cheap shots,and headshots,make the offender stay out as long as the injured player plus 10 Games. That may make the IDIOTS that do these things think Twice, if they can count that high.
Rob Pula, 2011-03-16 12:40:20

I'm so sick and tired of these idiots that think nothing should be done about head shots because there will always be injuries no matter what. So let's go back to optional seat belts in cars, hey people are dying anyways. Let's allow drunk drivers, hey people are dying any ways. As for Bruce's enlightened comment to Habs fans, of course if it was Hal Gill that laid out a Bruin player Canadians fans probably would not have come to demonstrate, the Bruins fans would have. Again coming back to the drunk driver analogy, if my son is killed by a drunk driver I will stand up and speek out against drunk driving, does it mean that drunk driving is OK because my neighbor doesn't speak out with me? no it just means that I'm directly impacted and he's not.
Emmanuel, 2011-03-16 12:13:08

Instead of the rink being 200 feet by 85 feet, make it 200 by 100 another 15 feet in width. Hockey needs to make some form of change because the culture or the "CODE" is not like this from the 1970s or 1980s. This game has become sick.
Mike Carroll, 2011-03-15 14:39:31


There are more concussions in Women's Hockey and there is no hitting. It's more than just hits and intent, the game is faster, the players are bigger, the equipment is more solid and there is more at stake. It seems hypocritical to me for fans to be outraged, when they boo players when they perceive they're not giving it their all, so this pressure also pushes players to skate harder and consequently, hit harder. There is a fine line between a legit hit and an illegal one, but when you add the pressure put on players by fans who go wild when their home team players hit the opposition, it becomes hard to not cross said line.

A lot of fans are hypocrits as I said, they love to complain when the opponents hit their players, but love it when their players hit the opponents and they certainly along with the media, would rip players if they pulled up on body checks. Anyway, it's a man's game anyway, if you don't like it, don't watch it and that might be the way you'll get your wish, there are other leagues out there or just watch women's hockey where there is no hitting. We're all free and nobody is forcing anyone to watch this particular league, so stop whining.
El Nik, 2011-03-13 18:25:59

Want to get rid of head shots.... 1. Get rid of the arrogant Ahole Bettman who knows nothing about hockey..except GREEN BUCKS.. 2. Get the NHLPA take a real stand and protect it's members .... never mind the $$$ sign (salaries)... 3. Let's give a good old BRONX Cheer to the NHL LITTLE pipsqueak president every time he has the audacity or the gual to show up in any of our original 6 oue CANADIAN rinks. What the hell does he know about our national pastime. I am CANADIAN an a Red Wing fan. Chara pushed Max PERIOD. out of frustration, PERIOD.
gordon, 2011-03-12 16:29:16

How can the NHL be so shortsighted to give Bettman a contract extension at a ridiculous salary of $36 million. He isn't worth 36 cents. As long as he is head of the NHL, head shots will always be there. Why not make a rule like high sticking, except the penalty is more severe. Intentional or not there is a penalty of 5 minutes and automatic game misconduct.If the player is severely hurt then an automatic 25 game suspension. or the player is out as long as the injured player is. The suspensions handed out now are no deterrent to not do the dame infraction again. They area complete joke. The NFL took the bull by the horns about head hits why can't the NHL
GoHabs, 2011-03-12 14:01:20

OK, all you people blaming the rink design, think of this. Unless the rink is completely encircled in glass, including the player's bench, there will still be 4 stanchions, one on each end of the bench. Sure, the stanchion contributed to the injury, but it was Chara's clear shove at the end that put Pacioretty's head there in the first place. Punish the head shots NHL, ALL of them!
Laker, 2011-03-12 12:50:42

It's a sad day for the NHL when they've signed the almighty Bettman to a new contract.

What were they thinking?
Gordie, 2011-03-12 11:18:08

Taken by itself, its simply a play where a larger guy rubs out a smaller fwd, happens all the time in contact sports (Interferance) Yes. But the design of the Boards coupled with the rub out lead to the violent result. Change the Boards & eliminate 99% of these injuries. Unfortunately size matters when the game is played on a small ice surface.

East Coast Swanky, 2011-03-12 11:03:47

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