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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



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98 Comments

I love the sport so much too bad these injuries happen, One option to prevent those kinda hits is if a player is out for two months the player in fault should be out for the same amount of time + the money he would earned in that time would be taken off his pay times 2, thats my point of view might help solve the issue
Rejean Michaud, 2011-03-10 20:37:22

remove or setback the center glass sections between benches so that there are only two heavily padded stanchions exposed at each end. mark the ice completely red about 8 feet out and slightly beyond the bench limits. this would clearify the too many men penalty zone and the red no hit zone would prevent events similar to the bobsled fatality in the last olympic practice run. hockey on!
gary, 2011-03-10 19:54:26

Someone slam Gary Bettmans head into the turnbuckle and then ask him how he feels about head shots.


James Sproat, 2011-03-10 19:28:28

I cannot believe that anyone would honestly believe that there was intent to injure on that play . It is super unfortunate that Max got badly injured on that play, but to say Chara knew what he was doing and fully intended on injuring Max honestly do not have a clue. The time that it took for that hit to even happen was all of like maybe a second after Max swatted the puck down the ice, you cant even say to yourself "He is going passed the bench I am going to hurt Max bad by putting his head into the stantion" in anywhere short of time that the play took place. It was Chara getting beat to the outside and his reaction was to rub Max out before he could get by him, from the time I started hockey we were taught on how to rub a player out, sure in his case it was borderline interference as Max had touched the puck, but even in the early 2000's you always seen guys admiring their pass for a couple seconds after they released it get drilled with their head down and it was deemed a legal body check because they player had just touched the puck. And as long as you have guys anywhere from 5'8" to 6'9" on the ice you will never fully get rid of headshots accidental or intentional unless you either A. Take hitting out completely, (if you do not like hitting then try that other game on ice, no not curling because rocks hit rocks, but rather figure skating, or B) Make Chara drop to his knees before he hits someone like St. Louis.
FlameSince83, 2011-03-10 18:44:30

Not a head shot....
Jeff, 2011-03-10 18:41:46

Make the players wear their helmets properly. They have chin straps for a reason. Also, make them have visors on at least. This may not have prevented this injury, but would more than likely have prevented a lot of others. Also, make the glass go all around the rink instead of having the bench areas without. That would have definitely prevented this injury. Just my two cents. Thanks.
Dan Aneca, 2011-03-10 18:35:35

It's not all about Chara, it's the 100 previous headshots that make me sick.

Chara clearly gave him the final shove at the last second..he's guilty.

Taking out the dirty hits won't take the hitting out of the game but I'd rather see the hitting gone rather than players like Crosby and Savard and the rest. There's too much emphasis on hitting ...nothing is more ridiculous than the sight of every Team Canada racing around the rink trying to "finish checks" and "set the tone".

Play hockey and suspend these idiots with no respect. Bravo Air Canada for speaking up,,,the NHL is a joke right now.
Kevin, 2011-03-10 18:32:26

Buffalo player same night into stachion,within 12 feet not always called interference,San Jose same night no stanchions between bench, Pacioreety lsft his skates did not know where he was in regards to stanchion,half his own fault, rookie doesnot know how to take a check
Paul, 2011-03-10 18:07:06

Question is how long will parents pay $300 a seat and $200 a sweater for their kids to see that ???

It took the americans 1 month to clean up headshots in the NFL, how long will it take Bozo Bettman to clean up the NHL headshots ? 500K unskilled player knocks out 7 M skilled player, people pay to see the 7M player not the 500K player. The NHL right now rivals rollerderby and WWF except it's for real. Bettman needs to go period.
Norm Brunet, 2011-03-10 17:40:12

A fine of $1,000,000 per player who deliberately hits to the head, and a 5-game suspension I think would end deliberate head shots overnight.
John, 2011-03-10 17:33:53

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