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Wanna Fight?
By Quint Randle

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I don’t really like hockey fights. Well, what I really mean is I don’t like being in them. I’ve been playing on and off since I was 8 years old and have never really been in one. There have been a few scuffles here and there, but nothing more than a few two-minute minors (three minutes when we’re playing running time.)

Probably the biggest reason I haven’t been in any fights is because I’ve played in goal the majority of my life. But that’s no excuse; just ask Patrick Roy. I think the main reason is that I’m just not a hot head. When someone gets overly rough and starts to push and shove with a glove in my face (albeit masked), I generally use my laughing technique. I let out a real “I’m-disgusted-by-your-immaturity” laugh and say, “Get a life, buddy!” It gets their goat every time.

Now pro hockey fights are a whole other matter. I probably like them just as much as the next guy. For fans, they’re a part of the game, part of the rough appeal that attracts us. But the media continue to stereotype the game based on previous decades when game violence was out of control at times.

The problem is because we’re fans, we “get it.” We understand the culture, the context, the history. But taken out of context — like in a highlight clip on the news — the non-fan probably views our game as not much more than a boxing match. (Although I don’t think any ears have been bitten off recently.)

Remember the last time you told a friend or co-worker that you were a hockey player. They probably replied, “And you still have all your teeth?”

Think about that the next time you’re enjoying a good scrap.



This first appeared in the 11/1997 issue of Hockey Player Magazine®
© Copyright 1991-2003, Hockey Player® LLC and Hockey Player Magazine®
Posted: Mar 24, 2005, 16:04
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