Monday, January 3, 2011

Two good hockey stories in the NYT -- when hockey moms lace up and novel sportsmanship rule

It's cliche at this point to write that spouses and/or significant others of hockey players often aren't too crazy about the sport. It's a timesuck and no one who doesn't play can possibly understand how much fun it is and how hockey pretty much demands obsessive behavior in order to win.

This recent story in the New York Times is about the increasing number of women -- and hockey moms -- who have decided to give ice hockey a go. And guess what? They end up feeling the same about the sport as those with penises. This is not at all surprising.

The second story involves a rule put in place in Minnesota youth hockey to decrease fighting and cheap shots. The gist of it: teams that stay under a certain amount of penalty minutes each game receive an extra "sportsmanship" point in the standings. Anecdotal evidence suggests it's working in terms of reducing injuries.

I kind of like the idea. Obviously, penalties are part of the game and I'm not sure a team that survives a penalty kill and still manages to win should be penalized in the standings. That said, there are teams out there that know they're good enough to win and beat the living crap out of their opponents -- in other words, they can stomach the penalty minutes. I'm not sure that's good for the sport, especially at the recreational levels.


photo credit: The New York Times

No comments:

Post a Comment