Sunday, June 13, 2010

It's Only 113 Shopping Days Until the Opening of the NHL Regular Season

The game: Germany vs. Australia, FIFA World Cup.

Why I chose it: A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. I have to watch something that closely resembles hockey or I will in fact, explode. Though I must say, soccer players don't meet the minimum height requirement. But they are cutie pies, and they do have beautifully chiseled thigh muscles, so two out of three ain't bad.

Not to worry, though: It's only 10 days until the NHL Awards and 12 until the draft. And then July 1 opens the free agent trading frenzy. And by the end of this month, I will be a Portland Winterhawks season ticket holder. So, really, counting the exhibition season, it's only a few months until hockey is back in action. But still, 90 days or more without spitting, swearing, hat tricks and fighting is still 90 days or more too long in my book.

So, I will carry on with the rules: Section 5, Penalties. Fouls Against Players. Rule 539, Tripping. Rule 540, Checking to the Head and Neck Area.

Rule 539.a: A player who shall place his stick, leg, foot, arm, hand or elbow in such a manner that it shall cause his opponent to trip or fall shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee, minor, major + automatic game misconduct or match penalty. Injury is a major or match penalty.

Rule 539.c: In a "Breakaway" situation, when a player in "Control of the Puck" outside his own defending zone with no opponent to pass other than the goalkeeper, is tripped from behind, thus preventing a reasonable scoring opportunity, the Referee shall award to the non-offending team a penalty shot.

And if you think that's bad, don't even try this: 539.d. If, when the opposing goalkeeper has been removed from the ice, and the player in "control of the puck" outside his own defending zone, with no opponent to pass between him and the opposing goal is tripped from behind, the Referee shall award to the non-offending team a goal.

I think this is about to be banned in the NHL, but just in case, here it is:
540.a. A player who directs a check or blow, with any part of his body, to the head or neck area of an opposing player or "drives" or "forces" the head of an opposing player into the protective glass on boards, shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee, a minor + automatic game misconduct, major + automatic game misconduct or match penalty. Injury results in a match penalty.

Morals of the story:

The game: This is like the hockey version of don't shoot a man in the back. Only in this case it's don't trip him from behind. The dude's on a breakaway, let it go. There's no point in trying, because you're gonna give the other team a goal or an opportunity to score a goal. I'm not sure why hits to the head and neck are even allowed in the current rulebooks, but I'm glad they are on their way to being punished more severely. You may ask, but Sam, it's punished already. Yes, but that's different than being banned or not allowed. There is nothing in any rulebook that says "can't." It just defines what a particular foul is and outlines the punishment. And as we all know, players do most of it anyway.

Life: The life versions of tripping from behind and hits to the head should come with the same severe penalties. For example:

-- The offense: Tripping another person in the form of sabotaging their relationship with a boyfriend or girlfriend for the purpose of stealing said better half. The penalty: Banishment to a prison on a deserted island with other social rejects who don't know how to go out and find their own partner the right way, complete with no cell phone, no access to internet (and hence,,, etc.) and public exposure of every dastardly thing you ever did in a relationship, so everyone else knows that you are just as big a schmuck as they are. Now mind, perhaps this could be seen as good thing...let the little tiddlywinks run wild amongst themselves you might argue...but still, at least they would be far away from the rest of us.

-- The offense: Checking to the head or neck in the form of banks who loaned money to homeowners that they knew couldn't afford it and charging 150% interest on high-balance credit cards so said owners get in even further over their heads. The penalty: It's well underway in the form of CEO firings and new rules and all. But still, I say banishment to a double-wide in the farthest reaches of the Nevada desert, accompanied by a minimum wage job and a credit card with a $500 limit and monthly fees if you don't pay the $20 minimum balance, which of course you can't. In short, make the punishment fit the crime. It's old school, but it works.

Next up: Section 5, Penalties. Fouls Against Players. Rule 541, Women-Body Checking. Other Penalties: Rule 550, Abuse of Official and Unsportsmanlike Conduct by Players.

No comments:

Post a Comment