Friday, April 06, 2007

Of Sidesteps and Red Herrings, Part II

Today we'll take a look at how the Ultimate Fighting on Ice fans insult our intelligence. For those who want to follow along, Part I is here.

The UFOI fans join in the resounding chorus of denouncers whenever a Marty McSorely or Todd Bertuzzi or Chris Simon go over the line of all acceptable conduct and even violate the sacrosanct "Crock"...er...I mean "Code."

But do they have to insult our intelligence in the process?

They tell us, with a straight face, that these transgressions "have nothing to do with fighting."

Hmmm.... Let's take a closer look to see if this holds any water.

Marty McSorely's second biggest claim to fame is as personal body guard for Wayne Gretzky. McSorely was a known fighter. McSorely's victim, Mr. Donald Brashear also has a reputation for being a bodyguard/fighter. So mean to tell me that there was no chance at all of McSorely trying to get Brashear to fight to him. None at all? They had already fought once in that game so no way McSorely was looking for round two? He had already looked for it earlier in the game (round two that is). But he wasn't looking for it with just seconds left in the game?

Sorry, I don't buy that.

Todd Bertuzzi flat out sucker punched Steve Moore. Steve Moore was persona non grata in Vancouver after his hit on Markus Naslund earlier in the season. As a matter of fact, there was open talk of payback leading up to the game. Moore had fought once already in the game that ended his career and almost his life. Often when a player commits certain transgressions, one fight isn't enough "to even the score." Claude Lemieux had to fight multiple times to "atone" for his hit on Kris Draper. So you mean to tell me that Bertuzzi wasn't looking to start a fight with Steve Moore?

Sorry, I don't believe you.

Chris Simon is considered one of the best fighters in the history of the league. As a matter of fact, like Todd Fedoruk, if it wasn't for his fighting ability, it is very likely that Chris Simon never makes it to the NHL. While Ryan Hollweg's hit on Simon was borderline do you honestly expect us to believe that Chris Simon WAS NOT looking to start a fight with Hollweg?

Sorry, I'm not a dumb as you look.

Fact of the matter is, all three of these ugly incidents have everything to do with fighting. Simply saying that it doesn't quite frankly insults the intelligence of everybody listening to you because it is more than safe to say that guys like Marty McSorely and Chris Simon aren't even in the NHL if the NHL had done away with fighting. So therefore, McSorely and Simon can't swing their sticks and give the NHL and hockey in general a black eye. Furthermore if fighting is banned and the NHL on and off ice officials do their job, any player who decides to swing their stick will have the book thrown at them. The "dirtiness" would never get very far as long as the NHL demonstrated a seriousness in protecting its players.

Finally, players would feel free to make LEGAL contact with the star players because a guy like Todd Bertuzzi would know that they will face severe penalties if they step out of line. This of course would lead to more hitting which is good thing. UFOI fans like to sell the fiction that the anti-fighting crowd wants to do away with all hitting in hockey. Once again, this is patently untrue. Getting rid of the sideshow circus violence and getting rid of all contact are two completely different things.

In Part III, which should be the last installment unless circumstances warrant, I'll tell you how it is actually the UFOI Fans who are the ones advocating LESS hitting. Trust me, you don't want to miss it because once you've read this, you'll be able to takedown ANY UFOI fan. It isn't that hard to begin with but it is good to take away all of their sidesteps and red herrings and expose them for the fools that they are. Leaving them speechless is fun!

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