I suspect that this is hockey rather than ice hockey, but I suspect that you knew that already.
Er, no. It was field hockey rather than hockey. ;-)
OK, to be honest, I don't really have a case with this one; "soccer" / "American football" I can argue since it's the world's game - where as (field) hockey is played only by a few subcontinentals, plus approximately three upper-class English girls with prominent teeth and double-barrelled names.There's an urban myth over here (or at least in my imagination) that a "fight quotient" is written into NHL rules and regulations - i.e. a certain number of televised punch-ups must occur each year. Is this the case?
Tafkass,The state of field hockey in the UK sounds remarkably like the situation in Canada...There is and never has been a "fight quota" in the NHL (at least not one in the rules!). Even a true believer like me, though, can forgive someone for having that impression.To make a long story short: I believe there are "good" fights and "bad" ones in hockey. The bad ones are slowly disappearing--they generally involve players whose sole function is to serve as enforcers: if some offense is committed against a "star" player, their job is to go out and make somebody pay for it. The younger of these guys will often pick a fight with an established enforcer in the hope of establishing some "street cred." These kinds of fight have every appearance of being "staged," but they've been around for a long time.New rules and team salary caps have made it increasingly more difficult for teams to keep these types of player on the payroll. Good riddance, I say.Good fights: It's not an exaggeration to say that hockey is the fastest team sport in the world. It's also very much a body contact sport. It sometimes happens that, in the heat of battle, two players have simply had enough of one another. They drop their gloves and have at it. It's really quite gentlemanly in its way. They get it out of their systems, spend a few minutes in the penalty box, no hard feelings. I believe this sort of outlet is almost a necessity in a game like hockey. Past attempts to clamp down on fighting have lead to an increase in the most horrendous of infractions--most notably the use of one's stick as a weapon. This can have deadly consequences, whereas a good fight rarely injures anything more than one's pride. The league is in a tough situation regarding fighting. On the one hand, they want to get rid of the thuggish, WWF-type image that excessive fighting evokes in people's minds. On the other, there are a lot of people who go to the games just for the fights.