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What Should the NHL Do About Players Fighting with Visors?

Nucks IceMan@nucksiceman@twitter.comCorrespondent INovember 17, 2009

CALGARY, CANADA - OCTOBER 24:  Dion Phaneuf #3 of the Calgary Flames fights with Stephane Veilleau of the  Minesota Wild during the first period at the Pengrowth Saddledome on October 24, 2007 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.  (Photo by Dale MacMillan/Getty Images)
Dale MacMillan/Getty Images

Written by: Larry "The Nucks IceMan" Johnson

www.nucksiceman.com

This question has irked me for a number of seasons, so I throw it out to you Bleacher Report readers. What should the NHL do?

There are many players out there that are involved, but I will just name a few and I’m sure you can add names to the list. I’m talking about, in no particular order, guys like the Flames' Dion Phaneuf, the Wild’s Cal Clutterbuck and the Avs' Cody McLeod.

These players are all physical and bang with the best. But when challenged, they are fighting on many occasions, guys without visors.

Now I don’t begrudge them their right to protect their face with a visor, but when it comes to a scrap, how likely are they going to take a shot that’s not bouncing off of it?

So the guy fighting without the visor is at a distinct disadvantage, never mind the possibility of breaking some bones in his hand, as was the case with Canucks Jannik Hansen (missed 19 games), who bust his on Gilbert Brule’s visor.

Yes, Hansen wears a visor, too, but he took off his helmet. More about that later. Read on.

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The other night Colorado’s McLeod (visor) took on not only a smaller player in Rick Rypien but also one that doesn’t wear a visor. Rypien has already been out of the lineup a number of times with hand injuries from fighting, so being aware of that, he had to try and land upper cuts.

As it was, Rypien had to absorb a few shots himself until he landed a few in some unprotected areas of Mcleod.

Clutterbuck, a league-leader in hits, against Shane O’Brien (no visor). Dion Phaneuf against former Av Ian Laperriere (no visor). This list goes on and on.

To me it’s cowardly to hide behind the visor when you know that your style of play is bound to instigate fights. 

If you have ever attended a game in the WHL, OHL or QMHL, you will find that the junior players have more honor and respect “the code” by taking of their helmets whenever possible, before they participate in the fist-a-cuffs.

The NHL is not about to ban fighting, so isn’t it about time they brought in a penalty for fighting with a visor on? Another thought, which I saw on Hockey Night in Canada, is a visor that pops off with a push of a release button.

Why not make those mandatory on all helmets that have visors?

In summation, if these types of physical players wearing visors answer the bell, then be prepared to drop the helmet along with the gloves.

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