There are screams from every quarter over head shots and mandatory visors in the NHL again after the Matt Cooke hit and suspension and the Manny Malholtra incident where he took a puck in the eye.
Why do we care? These are pros? If they want these things they should be lobbying for them not us. There are still a great many NHL players who are against both visors being mandatory and head shots (even accidental ones) becoming punishable by a 2 minute penalty or more.
Why do we care more about protecting their careers and futures than they seem to?
Lets concentrate on amature hockey and make sure that kids are as safe as they can be. Visors, mouthgaurds and neck guards have been mandatory for years and the OHL already has a 100% head shot rule. More amature associations and certainly Hockey Canada should adopt that across the board.
But the pros? Save your emotions. Until the players are determined to protect themselves there is no reason for the rest of us to have concern for them.
The first major step in getting the number of NHL concussions under control has nothing to do with rule enforcement and everything to do with vanity enforcement. Players don't start wearing special concussion helmets until AFTER they've had a concussion. Why not wear one to prevent it in the first place ? The reason is simple vanity. Most concussion helmets don't really look cool.
Why doesn't the NHL demand a 4 buckle chin harness like the NFL does? The reason is simple. Vanity. They don't look very cool on a hockey helmet and that drooping chin strap has become the trendy look no matter how little it keeps the helmet in place.
I simply can"t get myself all riled up about all this until I see players demanding protection from each other and they are not.
I will start to care when they start to care. Until then lets just keep counting the concussions and make plans to feed these people through straws later in life.
See you at the rink.