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Lucic: Don’t ban fighting in junior hockey

Mar 1, 2012, 12:01 PM EDT

Earlier this week we wrote about the push to ban fighting in junior hockey. But if you ask Milan Lucic, that would be a bad idea.

“I’m totally against it,” Lucic told The Province on Wednesday.

“I think there will be more injuries because there’d be no fear of fighting. The game will become dirtier. And, for myself, I don’t think I could have made the NHL the way I did without it.”

Lucic was a frequent fighter during his two seasons with the Vancouver Giants of the WHL.

His old coach, Don Hay – still behind the bench in Vancouver – agrees with Lucic, but for a different reason.

“If they have fighting in the NHL, I don’t think it’s fair to not have our players exposed to that,” said Hay.

Windsor Spitfires coach Bob Boughner concurs.

“We’re on a very, very dangerous slope,” he told the Windsor Star.

“We’re preparing guys for the next level and if you toughen the rules and get rid of it (fighting) in the game, it would have to coincide with the NHL and AHL.

“If they’re not doing it, then you’re putting kids (looking to go pro) in a tough situation.”

  1. solador78 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:04 PM

    That’s a logical fallacy.

    If dirty plays such as headshots were properly punished, then fighters wouldn’t need to enforce frontier law in the first place.

    • drewsylvania - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:49 PM

      This assumes they’re properly punished, which they often aren’t.

  2. eyecorporations - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:06 PM

    Has Lucic ever watched an NCAA hockey game? Didn’t think so.

    • solador78 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:13 PM

      Olympic hockey is fastest most exciting hockey there is.

      The NHL’s product is diluted by too many teams that they need dirty plays and fighting to hide the fact that 2/3 of the players suck.

      • drewsylvania - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:50 PM

        Huh? Many Olympic teams are composed of NHL players.

      • velocirapist - Mar 1, 2012 at 1:02 PM

        Thank you! This league needs to contract. There’s a lot of talent in the league in markets that are pretty terrible. Cut 4-6 teams, spread the skill around, drop the goons.

    • eyecorporations - Mar 1, 2012 at 2:37 PM

      Geez people, I’m not opposed to fighting, but Lucic is a moron for trying to claim that the game will become dirtier.

      • hairpie - Mar 1, 2012 at 3:09 PM

        It absolutely will. No accountability.

      • eyecorporations - Mar 1, 2012 at 3:20 PM

        So there’s no accountability in NCAA or International hockey? That’s complete BS

  3. babar61 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:10 PM

    Lucic is bang on. Fighting is essential to the game.

    • solador78 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:11 PM

      Then why is it against the rules?

      Why bother penalizing players for fighting at all?

      • babar61 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:20 PM

        Its not against the rules. Its just a penalty. It’s important have to have some restrictions on fighting. It is in place or else players could just go around freely punching people in the face.

        Olympic hockey also uses the best players in the world and the ice is bigger. The talent depth is much deeper on team sweden/russia then lets say the Columbus blue jackets and Carolina hurricanes.

      • solador78 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:24 PM

        By definition a penalty is punishment for BREAKING THE RULES.

        Players do go around freely punching (hello Marchand!) because the penalty doesn’t fit the crime.

        I’m not saying to increase the penalty for fighting, but rather increase the penalty for dirty plays.

        Take out dirty plays and there’s no need to fight.

        Everybody wins… except the media who rely on revenge story lines to promo their pregame shows.

      • drewsylvania - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:52 PM

        Oh good lord. If they had a no-tolerance policy for all types of penalties, nobody would play. You’d have to start the game over from scratch.

    • solador78 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:15 PM

      If fighting is so essential to hockey, then why don’t they fight in the playoffs, which is the best hockey the NHL has to offer?

      • solador78 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:33 PM

        The reason there’s no fighting in the playoffs is because there’s fewer dirty plays.

        There are fewer dirty plays in the playoffs because of a fear of suspension.

        It has nothing to do with being afraid of fighting!

        A suspension for a couple of games during the season means nothing.

        A much better equivalent would be a suspension of 40-80 games, which is comparable to 2-4 games in the playoffs.

      • grillmarks - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:51 PM

        Why do you have such a strong opinion on this? Jeez… chill out.

      • hairpie - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:59 PM

        No one wants an instigator penalty, thats why they dont CURRENTLY fight in the playoffs. They used to fight in the playoffs even more than the regular season.

  4. DTF31 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    I don’t think fighting should be taken out. I’d rather have some team send a guy to beat the piss out of my rat than superman himself into my star.

  5. mgp1219 - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:33 PM

    hey solador

    you hate the Bruins so much that if Lucic said fighting should be banished then you would come up with about 20 reasons why it should not be.

    • gallyhatch - Mar 1, 2012 at 2:25 PM

      Right on mgp1219. There are so many opinions on this site coming from people who are clearly still butt-hurt over the Bruins winning last year that the comments can’t even be taken seriously.

  6. drewsylvania - Mar 1, 2012 at 12:56 PM

    Fights *prevent* cheap shots–if the guy throwing them is willing to throw down.

    • hairpie - Mar 1, 2012 at 1:12 PM

      or just eliminate the ridiculous instigator penalty and the guy throwing cheap shots will have to throw down whether he wants to or not. let the game police itself.

  7. xxshookonexx - Mar 1, 2012 at 1:44 PM

    In other news, the Montreal Canadiens have started the petition process to be moved down to junior level.

  8. taytay099 - Mar 1, 2012 at 5:50 PM

    How often does a fight end with a serious injury? I think I have to agree with Lucic. We saw a lot less rats throwing cheapshots when you had a tough guy skating on the same line with a couple of talented guys.

    Fighting not only is a way to police a game, but it can help guys who are trying to find a spot on the roster or it can help change the momentum of a game.

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