This year has had such an abnormal amount of high sticks, especially serious high sticking injures. What is the cause of it and what should be done.
I think the lighter sticks is a main reason for all these highsticks, these players have no idea how they stick is going to end up on their follow threw.
I don't think mandatory visors is the answer... I think these players are highsticking them because of a lack of respect or caring. The league has to start giving out automatic suspensions and no excuse of accidental or not. If you give a highstick you get an automatic game suspension. If you do it again the suspension doubles from one game to two games to four games etc. They players will quickly realize they have to make a conscious effort of keeping their sticks down.
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I don't think there's an increase in high sticking injuries. It's just that the media has chosen to focus in on it (probably because of the Owen Nolan injury in Toronto).
Visors aren't the answer, ask Nagy and Hossa.
You can't add automatic suspensions because I'd say at least 2/3 times, it's an accident. You say accidental or not? Well you're gonna have a league full of minor leaguers because accidents happen. It's an inevitable part of the game that you can't control.
It's just part of playing the game, it's one of the risks that you assume when you play professional hockey. You're gonna break your nose. You're gonna lose some teeth. You're gonna get cut. It's the risk that you assume.
I agree with the penalty being a 1 game suspension. I don't think that the doubling of suspensions is needed though, as you'd end up with guys eventually getting suspended for 64 games for one high stick (I know you probably meant for us to assume there'd be a limit to the number given).
If guys are given a game off each time it happens, it won't take long for them to start paying better attention to what the hell they're doing with the sticks while playing. Even an automatic 5 minute major regardless of intent would fix a lot of the problems after the first couple times each team got screwed because of it.
The real problem is that even if you sentenced every high sticker to death, the refs only seem to catch one out of every ten high sticks that happen, even when the guy's got the puck. Maybe move the one ref upstairs?
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I haven't seen so many fun games to watch in a long time. The Hawks/Ducks game that just ended was action packed with rough checking, some real tough play in the corners and some amazing stickwork, not to mention Patrick Kane and Corey Perry.