Fighters Have Worn Out Their Welcome

Burke Decries End of the NHL Fighter On Day He Demotes Colton Orr - James Mirtle at the Globe and Mail

"I do wonder where our game is going," Burke said. "I know the Greenpeace folks will be happy with this, but I wonder where we're going when Brendan Shanahan's got six hearings every two days.

You see the garbage that happened in here the other night [with Steve Downie going after Dion Phaneuf] and I wonder about the accountability in our game. I wonder where we're going with it. That's the only lament I have on this. The fear that if we don't have guys looking after each other then the rats will take this game over. That's my fear.

I see guys that run around and start stuff and won't back it up and it makes me sick to my stomach."

This got me thinking, are fighters integral to the game of hockey historically? Let's have an exercise shall we. Think of a fighter, or rough and tumble team prior to the Broad Street Bullies. Go on, I'll wait. Gordie Howe you say? Only 21 fights in 5 decades. Still waiting. You can't can you? That's because before the mid-70s there was no such thing as the hockey enforcer. Now that's not to say there weren't players who fought, but those players could also, you know, play hockey. (See the aforementioned Mr. Hockey)

Fast forward to today's NHL. For every meat head like Zenon Konopka, there is a Milan Lucic. For every Matt Carkner, there is a Kevin Bieksa. Players who can play hockey and throw down the gloves when the situations calls for it. Before too long, those meatheads will be out of the NHL (because they don't possess NHL caliber hockey skills) and the NHL will return to the era of players fighting when emotions run wild, not when they just happen to be on the ice at the same time during their five minutes a night. Burke laments the "loss" of the fighter, but in reality the fighter was never here. He was just a fad lingering from the 70s and 80s like your great aunt's shag carpeting or wood paneling. One day they'll all be gone and we'll never miss them.

More links after the jump.

Leafs Links

Dion Phaneuf "Elected" All-Star Game Starter

Danny and PPP rip apart the ridiculousness around the fan vote, some media members, and voting shenanigans

Leafs/Jets Recap at Arctic Ice Hockey

Did you know the Jets are now 0-6-0 in B2B games and have been outscored 3-26?

All-Stars at Every Level

BCP likes the Leafs top-end talent.

Leafs Blank the Jets

Fighting for Stanley...very apt wouldn't you say?

Top 11 of 2011 - A Boy Named Dit

1967ers brings you some ol' timey card goodness.

Leafs Dominate 99/00 Thrashers Dress as 11/12 Leafs

Yes they did.

Game 40 in 10

11 - Did anyone notice former Leafs castoff Tim Stapleton centering the Jets' 1st line? Ooof.

Will the "Monster" Now Get His Chance?

Until he loses next, yes.

Other Links

University of Michigan's Been Asked About Hosting Winter Classic

This is slowly becoming the worst kept secret in hockey.

Beware of the World Junior Bump

How the WJC might affect draft stock, even though they shouldn't.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Pension Plan Puppets

You must be a member of Pension Plan Puppets to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Pension Plan Puppets. You should read them.

Join Pension Plan Puppets

You must be a member of Pension Plan Puppets to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Pension Plan Puppets. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker