Milbury and McGuire Talk Fighting
March 14, 2011 1 Comment
Courtesy of NBC, here’s Pierre McGuire and Mike Milbury’s conversation on hits to the head and fighting during the first intermission of NBC’s telecast of Chicago-Washington on the Game of the Week Sunday:
Milbury on Zdeno Chara’s hit on Max Pacioretty: “This collision crystallized all of the players concerns about getting hurt. Too many concussions, too many injuries. The GMs have got to decide about what’s an acceptable level of risk for players in the NHL, whether it’s hitting or any other aspect of the game. And they’re not going to get it done at the meetings down in Florida this week. They’re going to have to: put together a blue ribbon committee to make some recommendations; take their time over the summer; and revisit the rules they made in 2004 that changed the game. (There is) so much speed, 40 percent more hitting (today) than in 2004. Concussions are off the charts. “They’ve got to look at the equipment, the playing surface, and they definitely have to take a look at how the players get educated to this stuff because ultimately they’re responsible. One thing they can go to the meetings and come away with immediately is make this one simple change: take away the partitions…get the things out of there so the players don’t run into them. They do that all the time. The Pacioretty hit, which is deemed not suspendible, never would have happened if those things aren’t there.”
McGuire: “I agree with you in terms of the partitions. Last winter during the Olympic Games in Vancouver I worked about 45 games (most from the inside-the-glass position). There was never any glass between the two benches. There was no problem. I worked a game last year in the National Hockey League between the Florida Panthers and the Montreal Canadiens. There was never a problem with no glass. That’s the first big step. “But I also think there’s another step they have to go to. They really have to get rid of this seamless glass…Get rid of it.”
Milbury: “All around. And one step more. There going to have to look at the role of fighting and whether or not it has to be changed in any way shape or form. There’s too much of this going on. We’ve got to accept that we’ve got to make some changes in terms of player safety.
McGuire: “The one positive thing about this is that everybody’s paying attention to it and I think we’re going to have some good ideas to help fix it.”