Sunday, 2 October 2011

NHL and the Head Hits

Even before the season has begun, there have been many suspensions handed out due to head hits. The NHL is trying to crunch down on these type of hits as it is causing much damage to many players.
While I do agree, something needs to be done, I have to wonder if all aspects are being looked at .
Players today may be bigger and faster, has anyone gone back and averaged out the size and speed of players from 10, 15 and even 20 years ago compared to now ?
Has anyone even considered it may have something to do with the new equipment the players wear today ?
For example, take an elbow pad, and a hammer.. see how many hits it takes you to crack the pad. Then take that pad, and have your buddy smack you over the head with it. Let's see if it causes damage ;)
Before the padding became so damn hard, a player would hurt his elbow if he laid a head hit, probably more hurt than the head being hit.  The less padding on the elbows and shoulders , means that player may think twice before hitting a solid helmet/head with a shoulder or elbow hit .
I realize, all the new padding and equipment is to keep a player safe, but it also means more damage to the guy being hit with said equipment.
Before we start making so many new rules, before we start changing the game of hockey.. shouldn't we look into every aspect possible ? One of those aspects being the new equipment the guys wear .

The game of hockey has been around for so many years, and as times change, so do rules.. but stop for a second and think of the game without hits, without fights... it will no longer be the hockey game we have grown up watching and loving.
I am all for keeping players safe, I feel visors should be a must, and I feel many head shots should be suspendable, but I also feel the equipment needs to be taken into account and possibly altered to save many players from being injured.

I am putting this out there because I have yet to see this aspect of head hits being addressed. I am not an expert , just a fan, so I can not offer a solution, just a suggestion :)

EDIT - There is a video HERE of Shanahan talking about the equipment issue.. but why does he not address it in his 'hit' video explanations ? When going over a hit and suspension, why is the equipment not being taken into account ? Why is it not being discussed and looked into NOW ?  Why are commentators, media and fans not bringing up this subject with every hit ?


  1. Ellie, This subject has been talked about a lot over the last couple years...Here is Shanny explaining where they are with it.

  2. Wish that Video came up the 100 times i googled this subject .. LOL Thank You !!!

    If Shany is aware, why the heck is there NO talk of it on every hit that happens ? Why isn't it addressed in the video explanations of the hits ? Why are the media guys & twitter not abuzz with equipment talk ?
    He says in the vid it will be looked into & such, but then its not spoken of again..
    Its a subject that needs to be talked about a lot , amongst hockey fans & media. They game commentators need to be discussing it when hits are made.
    Its always " was there intent blah blah" Never " Did the equipment play a factor in the hit/injury".

    wtf !!!!! I follow a lot of hockey people on twitter & elsewhere & i have not ever seen them bring it up.

  3. I think the OHL is/was trying new softer should padding this season. Or maybe it was just preseason. Time to get rid of the hard plastic. Let's see guys take liberties with soft pads. They'll blow their shoulders out.
    Time to make it happen, NHL

    Love the post! This topic needs to be brought up more often!

  4. Thanks ! :).. I agree, there is not near enough discussion on this.
    I realize it is going to be looked into .. one day... but.. Not Soon Enough as far as i am concerned.
    Sure we need to stop head hits in the NHL but even the most innocent of hits with zero intent can cause so much damage.
    It bewilders me how this subject is not discussed amongst the hockey people more often.. or is it ever ?