As a codicil to this post, I would like to say that I am a huge hockey and, obviously, a huge MMA fan. But I never thought I'd see the day when the two sports were combined. I feel like that is what I am watching during the current NHL playoffs. There seems to be more fighting than passing and scoring. A few days ago, I witnessed a full-fledged guillotine choke on the ice!
Now, I am definitively a hockey purist which means I think fighting not only has a place in hockey, but is an important aspect of the self-policing nature of the sport. But, at the end of the day, when I'm watching hockey, I enjoy seeing hockey. The value of the sport, to me, is not fight after fight after fight which is what the current matchups seem to be devolving into, but the beauty of the unmatched intensity of the NHL Playoffs. In past seasons, that intensity never seemed to spill over into blatant aggression. This year seems, well . . . different. And to me, that's not a good thing.
The solution probably lies with some corrections in the atrocious officiating we've seen so far, because it's pretty clear Shanahan is in over his head. But until the officials step up, I'm not sure much is going to change.
In short, when there is a great MMA fight on, I'll be the first to tune in. And when there is a fantastic hockey game on, I'm front and center as well. But when you combine the two, I think they both lose something.
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