Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Boogaard meets his match

As with every fight, there were two sides to this one.

Eric Godard was playing in his first NHL game since March 31, 2006, when he was then with the Islanders — and there was really only one reason the Calgary Flames had recalled him for this game: Derek Boogaard.

Boogaard, meanwhile, is the league's biggest player (270 pounds), a feared heavyweight who shattered the cheekbone of then-Anaheim Ducks enforcer Todd Fedoruk earlier this year.

And while it's a good story that Godard made, well, good in his Flames debut, you also have to feel for Boogaard, who apparently suffered a serious concussion filling a really, really difficult role. None of these guys enjoy dropping the gloves; it's what they do to play in the league, and it's unfortunate when injuries inevitably occur during fisticuffs.

Eric, welcome back to the NHL. Derek, get well soon big guy.


At 2:39 p.m., January 10, 2007, Anonymous Daniel said...

As much as I do not like to see people get injured, I do not mind Boogard taking some kind of punishment. This guy is a goon, he will hit you when you are on the ice, go after your knees. A lot of fighters are out to make a statement and stand up for teammates, not to intentionally hurt the guy they are fighting. Boogard does intend to hurt, so it is great to see him get some back.

At 2:53 p.m., January 10, 2007, Blogger Doogie said...

This is an excellent argument against the maintenance of the dedicated enforcer position. Those guys can, and have, cause serious damage. Besides, two oversized, undertalented players punching each other in the face for the sake of maintaining a six-figure salary is not what hockey fighting is about. I respect middleweight bouts a lot more in that regard, because they generally come off as more genuine, more in line with the flow of the game and the events of the game.

Besides, look at the Oilers, as an example. They don't have a dedicated enforcer now that Big Georges is gone; instead, they have about a half-dozen guys who could fill the role in any given night -- Smith, Staios, Greene, Winchester, Moreau, and Torres -- but have other jobs to do, too, and have seen many unexpected players -- Thoresen springs to mind -- also show a willingness to get dirty.

At 10:39 p.m., January 10, 2007, Blogger J. Michael Neal said...

Example A (of many) of why hockey would be much better off without fighting.

At 12:14 p.m., January 17, 2007, Blogger Larry_in_PHX said...

Yeah, I am sure that was boring. I bet most people got up and went to get a hot dog or cotton candy instead watching one of things that makes the NHL so awful.


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