Friday, February 23, 2007

A "Code"? More Like A "Crock"

Unless your a hockey fan living in a cave (or just somebody who doesn't like hockey period) you've heard about the Buffaslugs-Senators brawl last night. You want to know why I despise fighting and why I think it is bringing the NHL down? Well this is the exact reason why.

Here's a video of the whole thing, and notice, that the hit that Chris Neil landed on Chris Drury was clean. If anything, Neil was maybe a half step late in laying out Drury. The chicken poop Buffaslugs however disagreed and Neil was called into account by Drew Stafford. For most people and teams, that would have been the end of it. However if you are in that is not the case. Lindy Ruff (who IMHO is now the biggest joke of a Head Coach in all of professional sports now that Bill Cowher has retired) immediately sent out his goons to exact another pound of flesh from the Senators.

Now, the Ultimate Fighting On Ice Fans bow down and worship "The Code." "The Code" calls for many things such as "you don't fight at the end of a shift," "skaters don't fight goalies," and "fighters don't fight non-fighters." Yet the Buffaslugs went after a unit of skill players from Ottawa. So where is the outrage for the UFOI fans about the Buffaslugs violating "The Code"???

Nope, they're too busy watching You Tube over and over again, cleaning up the mess they made creaming themselves, and setting their TiVo's for Saturday night's return bout in Ottawa (and if the Buffaslugs hold true to their form, they'll cower like the chicken poop that they are because they aren't on home ice).

Folks, this is how the whole Todd Bertuzzi-Steve Moore incident started. Moore laid Markus Naslund out with a clean hit and Vancouver couldn't believe it or let it go. Which is what I don't understand about "The Code." "The Code" basically says that hockey is a tough game played by tough players who have to be tough in order to make it as far as the NHL. Yet "The Code" says that certain players don't have to be tough. That even looking at these anointed guys cross-eyed is grounds for a line brawl like we saw last night. That isn't a "Code" that's a "Crock."

I still refer to the days of Mary-OH! Lemiuex and Jaromir Jagr in Pittsburgh as "The Pretty Boys." They too had an attitude of "hey we can do whatever we want to your guys, but how dare you try to return the favor to us." Mary-OH! was the first to complain about all the "obstruction." Remember when Mary-OH! came charging out of the penalty box after Kerry Fraser in 1994? That was because Mary-OH! was tired of being hit. Yet even then nobody called Mary-OH! out on it. It lead to the "obstruction crackdown" that many people complain has ruined the game. Brendan Shanahan has since taken up the mantle and has been caught talking out of both sides of his mouth.

It is the same attitude held by the Buffslugs and their chicken poop Head Coach Lindy Ruff today. When A.O. clobbered that Buffaslug Scumbag Danielle Briere from behind, Lindy Ruff wanted the book thrown at A.O. But when that Scumbag Danielle Briere speared A.O. in the gonads, Ruff said:

They're looking for a mountain in a molehill...It's a non-issue with me...Oh, maybe Danny was trying to send a little message. But there was really nothing there, except for them trying to make it look worse than it actually was.

Ok coach, we'll spear you in the gonads and see if you still feel the same way. But Ruff still wants to play the victim card. It is ok for his team and his players to go out and goon things up, but as soon as somebody tries to return the favor, he goes all ballistic. Hades, you can't even throw a hard clean check against the Buffaslugs. Where are the disciples of "The Code" to denounce him?

And the irony of this thing is, earlier this week; the GM's announced that they want to lighten up the instigator rule. It seems to me that last night was a pretty good argument against that because not a single Senator who got attacked last night had anything to do with the perceived transgression. If anything, the instigator rule should be tightened up. Major League Baseball has cut down on their bench clearing brawls because umpires are now required to toss managers when they believe that a pitcher is intentionally throwing at a batter. Maybe instead of giving instigators more "leeway" they should tighten their leashes by mandating an ejection of a Head Coach when an instigator penalty is handed out.

I have to say, I will be surprised if the NHL Front Office officially does anything other than look the other way at last night's festivities in Every other professional sports league would be handing down suspensions left and right after something like that. But the UFOI fans think that brings great "passion," "emotion," and "intensity" to the game and that without it the game is boring. (They still of course can't explain how the other professional sports leagues are able to generate "passion," "emotion," and "intensity" without allowing fighting.)

Finally, to add insult to injury to last night's game, it was ultimately decided by a gimmick. Seeing as how the fans were standing up and cheering throughout the whole thing; instead of the gimmick, why don't we just have the teams send out their goons to fight until somebody can't fight anymore to decide the winner. Better yet, let's have the goalies do it. The fans really love a goalie fight.



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