Nov 26, 2012, 10:00 AM EST
A new rule that enacts an automatic suspension upon a player’s 10th fight during a season has helped reduced fighting in the OHL by about 20 percent, according to The New York Times’ Jeff Z. Klein.
One might assume that the league’s enforcers are upset about possibly being marginalized, yet last season’s most frequent fighter Ty Bilcke said the league’s “definitely better because of it.”
“It’s definitely in the back of guys’ heads — they know,” Bilcke said. “Guys are more cautious. I think there’s a lot less dirty games, and play isn’t getting out of hand as much.”
Overall, Klein reports that fighting has declined about 20 percent – from .92 per game last season to about .71 so far in 2012-13.
Former NHL player and current Windsor Spitfires coach Bob Boughner argues that it cuts down on what sometimes seem like choreographed fights, forcing players to pick their spots.
“You can only do it so many times, so make sure you’re sticking up for a teammate or trying to change the flow of the game or something like that,” Boughner said. “But to fight for no reason? Especially with this rule, it doesn’t make sense anymore.”
Perhaps the NHL will take note?
(H/T to Kukla’s Korner.)
- Trade: Rangers land Yandle, Coyotes receive Duclair, first-rounder 65
- Trade: Capitals land Glencross, Flames get two picks 23
- Flames place Giordano on IR 5
- Flyers keep faint playoff hopes alive with win over Rangers 28
- Trade: Blackhawks acquire Vermette from Arizona for Dahlbeck, first rounder 73
- Jagr earns high praise in his Panthers debut 1
- Bruins maintain four-point edge in playoff race, hand Coyotes ninth straight loss 5
- NHL on NBC: Rangers look for a fourth straight win against the Flyers 7
- Ducks score four third-period goals, come back to beat rival Kings 9
- Blackhawks aren’t done talking trades, will look to add another forward 13
- Wild beat Avs, dying seconds fight set stage for rematch (146)
- Petrovic: Chicago will ‘probably seek revenge’ for Kane injury tonight (82)
- Trade: Blackhawks acquire Vermette from Arizona for Dahlbeck, first rounder (74)
- Report: Alex Petrovic avoids discipline after injuring Patrick Kane (69)
- Trading baggage: Blue Jackets grab Clarkson, send Horton’s contract to Leafs (66)