Class Match-Ups & Patrick Kane’s Video Game Pass
It's been a slow few days in the NHL, but outside of last night, which didn't feature many fights despite a decent schedule, the number of games have been light as well. The NHL has a very wax on, wax off schedule so far.
The fights we have seen have been evenly matched. Last night pests Steve Downie and Patrick Kaleta threw down. The fight looked like it was going to be all Kaleta, until Downie was able to get Kaleta's helmet+visor off, and then took over. Downie was not happy about Kaleta keeping his shield on. There was no replay to see how the fight started.
Perhaps the opposite of that scrap was Monday night's bout between middleweights Brandon Prust and Tanner Glass. The two went the distance, trading punches back and forth until tiring out after almost a full minute. This was the third time they've fought in the NHL. The previous two times Glass was with Vancouver and Prust with Calgary. As they're both in the "East" now, they may meet again a few times this season.
Speaking of visors
James Mirtle has a story in the Globe and Mail about Brian Burke and Paul Holmgren calling for mandatory visors. They each have a personal story, a turning point when they changed their mind about the topic.
I've personally never cared much. I know it comes into play with fighting, but if a player wants to wear one, it should be his call. I don't think the league or player's association will need to legislate it: insurance underwriters will.
On the fighting front, if there's a square off, remove it. If there's not one, there's little you can do. There's a Jarome Iginla quote I'm having trouble finding, but he was speaking about how it's frustrating that there's an extra penalty called if he instigates a fight with a visor, and he's encouraged to play tough — but he's also encouraged to wear the visor. While I understand the extra penalty for instigating with a visor now, as the majority of the league is moving towards wearing them, it'll be time to ditch the extra two minutes soon.
In the NHL, visor usage has risen steadily over the past decade, with roughly two-thirds of skaters in the league wearing one – up from just 30 per cent 10 years earlier.
So as visors phase themselves in, or get forced in from contracts, I'd rather the league and PA focus on figuring out what to do with the armor some players wear that's just as harmful to other players as it is protective to the one wearing it; and, if players do become more reckless with more protection, how to deal with that.
Only in a video game
Patrick Kane's spin-o-rama pass to Marian Hossa is sick. If there was luck involved, I don't want to know. This can't even be done in a modern video game. You need to go back to NHL '97 to get this kind of move off.
Sheldon Brookbank vs Jamal Mayers Oct 25, 2011
Steve Downie vs Patrick Kaleta Oct 25, 2011
Brandon Prust vs Tanner Glass Oct 24, 2011
Raffi Torres vs Luca Sbisa Oct 23, 2011
Steve Montador vs Cam Janssen Jan 3, 2006