Violencein Hockey Essay Research Paper Violence in

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Violencein Hockey Essay, Research Paper Violence in Hockey Conn Smythe, one of hockey s most respected figures, once said, If you can t beat em in the alley, you can t beat em on the ice. So, how can hockey be a clean and respectable sport if one of its former presidents tells us the only way to win is through back-alley violence? Obviously there are a few problems that have to be addressed concerning hockey in today s society. These problems are causing the downfall of a beautiful game. With a few simple revisions, the downfall can be remedied. First, hockey is loosing its meaning. Second, violence is detrimental to the success of hockey teams. Third, hockey players are misleading the youth by acting as faulty role models. Fourth, hockey players are frequently being injured.

Therefore, premeditated acts of violence must be eliminated from hockey. The National Hockey League (N.H.L.) needs to further continue the fight against deliberate acts of violence to uphold the integrity and prosperity of hockey. Hockey writer Jerry Sullivan suggests that the N.H.L. supports and condones violence within the game (Sullivan). In accordance with that, hockey expert analysts Jim Hunt and Don Cherry, also agree that the N.H.L. needs to be tougher in the policing its players (Hunt). As a result of acts of ruthless violence in the past, the N.H.L has started handling acts of violence that occur on the ice (Gordon). The efforts have been rewarded by a higher quality of hockey that appeals to a larger fan base (Gordon). Since fights have dropped in the N.H.L., the

leagues popularity and profitability have risen 18% from 1998-2000 (Westervelt). Hockey games have also started to appeal to a wider spectrum of people (Westervelt). With the extra revenue from larger the fan base, there is of a more opportunity for hockey to grow and progress (Westervelt). League officials are now truly beginning to understand the new breed of hockey fans that would prefer to see skating and passing as opposed to holding and fighting (Westervelt). Unnecessary acts of violence are desecrating hockey. Hockey is meant to be a fast paced, exciting sport that focuses on the skill, finesse, and team work (Ronberg). Instead, it has degraded itself to the level of a major wrestling television show (Ronberg). Unfortunately, illegal play is common place in hockey games at

all levels (Ronberg). According to statistics, there are approximately 40,000 acts of deliberate violence in the N.H.L. each year. With this in mind, Sportswriter Larry Wigge speaks of a nasty factor that certain teams use as a crutch for short-term success (Wigge). This, nasty factor , is characterized by an aggressive style that encourages players to intimidate through acts of violence (Wigge). Referees often feel that to protect their own integrity they must ignore the nasty factor (Wigge). The reason for this is because referees fear that they may be accused of throwing a game, as referee Rick Alterec was in 1987 (Wiggie). There is a lot more to hockey beyond the bully aspect of it, and I think the majority of hockey fans go along with that says Jim Thompson (Westervelt). It

is well agreed upon by players of the past that today s game does not have the meaning that it has in previous decades (Ronberg). Violent hockey teams are less likely to win. In a study of 1,462 penalties from 18 Stanley Cup Championship Final Series from 1980-1997, winning teams had less penalty minutes than losing hockey teams (McCaw). The teams with fewer penalty minutes had an average of seven more shots on goal per game (McCaw). In addition, over the coarse of a seven game series, less violent teams would acquire an astonishing fifty-three extra shots on goal (McCaw). Considering that there is only an average of 46 shots on goal per N.H.L. playoff game, this adds a entire extra game worth of shots (McCaw). Supporting data also shows that winning teams were noted for their