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Canadian Medical Association bashes NHL owners for ‘tolerating and promoting violence’

Aug 21, 2013, 6:32 PM EDT

jamiebennvsjoethorntongetty Getty Images

The Canadian Medical Association had some harsh words toward NHL owners during their annual meeting on Wednesday, as they voted to “condemn their complacency” in toning down violence in the sport, the Globe & Mail reports.

“The owners have a financial interest in tolerating and promoting violence and we need to be a counterweight,” Dr. Pierre Harvey said.

The league has taken measures to cut down on hits to the head, although a recent report indicates that hasn’t lowered the number of concussions.

This summer’s Competition Committee meeting focused on mandatory visors and … eliminating spin-o-ramas during shootouts, so one could say that the NHL is making baby steps toward better protection (but maybe not going all-in).

It’s tough to imagine critiques from the medical community changing hockey overnight, yet time will tell if fighting and other forms of on-ice violence will be phased out of the game.

Either way, this might not be the best time for NHL 14’s “Enforcer Engine” to draw so much attention

  1. ethanmacleod1685 - Aug 21, 2013 at 6:50 PM

    Joe Thornton vs Jamie Benn = best scrap of the year

    • ethanmacleod1685 - Aug 21, 2013 at 6:51 PM

      Is it bad that that’s all I took from this article

  2. endusersolutions2013 - Aug 21, 2013 at 7:36 PM

    I don’t agree that they have not done enough overall, although I would recommend a clear word to the refs that clear blows to the head are not going to be tollerated just because they occur in the playoffs.

    Suspensions and longer suspensions have been put in place for heradshots, especially repeat offenders. Rules/clarifications have been added against what is legal and what not in “lateral hits”.

    The penalties are there recarging inciting, instigating, agressor, but if the refs don’t call them, I don’t see how that is the owners fault.

    So if the “physician preaching” is going to have much effect, maybe they should direct it at the refs.

    And I may be missing some things.

  3. hockeyflow33 - Aug 21, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Left off the agenda, MMA and boxing.

    • endusersolutions2013 - Aug 21, 2013 at 8:08 PM

      Ah, we agree on something:) I was at a Buffalo Wild Wings to watcyh a playoff game, and on the screen next was a MMA “event”. I had never seen that before, and what really hit me was when one fighter was down, instead of the guy standing being sent to a “corner”, he continued to pummel a guy unable to defend himself.

      That’s a sport? Probably would have sold a lot of tickets in the old roman colosseums.

      • stakex - Aug 21, 2013 at 11:57 PM

        That might be a little over dramatic….. but just a little.

  4. mp1131211 - Aug 21, 2013 at 9:23 PM

    oh, that spin-o-rama was a real health concern! Great! pheww!!

    • dueman - Aug 22, 2013 at 10:48 AM

      Nobody said it was. Re-read and take it all in.

  5. mattyo99 - Aug 21, 2013 at 9:53 PM

    Doctors and the medical professials are just mad cause they didn’t get picked or played any sports growing up, that’s why there doctors now😜

    • nj666 - Aug 22, 2013 at 12:16 AM

      that was a dumb statement.

  6. arrooo - Aug 21, 2013 at 10:02 PM

    Sounds like the Canadian Medical Association wants to go. Lets drop em and go

  7. Moop - Aug 21, 2013 at 10:03 PM

    Why not condemn UFC? In the NHL fighting is part of the sport and plays a role in the game. Not to mention you’re trying to balance on ice while fighting, which makes it harder to throw punches. Compare that to UFC, where fighting IS the sport and you’re allowed to basically beat your opponent senseless. Which seems worse?

    • stakex - Aug 22, 2013 at 12:02 AM

      That’s the very point that should prevent this from being taken seriously. MMA and boxing are far more dangerous in terms of long term brain injuries then the sport of hockey is, at least when it comes to hand to hand combat (a heavy hit, or puck to the face could probably do more damage)… yet they single out only hockey? Sounds like there is more to this then players health.

    • nicknyhc - Aug 22, 2013 at 6:58 AM

      No, lets not condemn UFC either.

      Professional athletes in ANY sport are well aware of the risks involved. If two adults consent to getting in a ring and fighting each other neither is a victim.

      It doesn’t matter which sport is “worse”. All sports that are physical/violent and involve injury are being played by willful participants that are aware of the risks involved. Governments and medical associations can mind their own business.

  8. makemulletsmandatory - Aug 22, 2013 at 2:26 AM

    yet time will tell if fighting and other forms of on-ice violence will be phased out of the game.

    I hope Im dead by then.
    When are theese god damn hippies gonna realize that two guys fighting is NOT violence?
    “raw violence”.. Says the metrosexual hippie-journalist…
    No, a slap on the face to someone who deserves it – and who WANTS to get it (and give it)

    • makemulletsmandatory - Aug 22, 2013 at 2:29 AM

      note to the reader: My writings are based on the principle and belive that two (or more) people who wants to fight do not perform “violence”.

      Violence, for me, is when somebody beats up somebody who doesnt want to get beaten. Simple as that.
      A slap is not violence either, for that matter.

  9. joey4id - Aug 22, 2013 at 9:00 AM

    It’s a scientific fact that repeated blows to the head will cause CTE. Period! From the caveman perspective I can understand why some are opposed to banning fights in hockey. There was a time slashing was tolerated and so was clutching and grabbing until the game deteriorated. Boston vs Chicago, for example in a 7 games series without a fight would not deteriorate the quality of the games. We’re all thought at a very young age that the differential between goals for and against determines the winner in hockey. Whereas the objective of the UFC fighter is to beat the heck out of your opponent leaving in daze. BTW, balancing yourself on skates when fighting is not that difficult. Anyone who started skating at a young age and played competitive hockey would know this. So kudos to the CMA standing up to greedy owners who capitalize financially from fights.

  10. banger60 - Aug 22, 2013 at 5:42 PM

    these people are grown adults, wether MMA or Hockey, they know when they signed a contract what there job is, no one forced them, just like no one forced me to buy a ticket and watch, don’t like it dont watch, case closed.

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