Several events in the last few weeks are again raising questions about violence in hockey both on and off the ice.
Officials with two Ontario minor hockey teams downplayed an incident that the provincial police described as a “brawl” involving more than two dozen parents. Closer to home, 15 university players were recently suspended over a high profile hockey brawl in Nova Scotia.
Brad Yetman is head coach of the East Coast Blizzard Major Midget Hockey Team and is studying to become a sports mental performance consultant.
Yetman says social media can help to inflame emotions. He says players can have a target on their back and heading into playoffs, the most intense time of year. He says it’s hard to control those type of situations.
Yetman says fighting may always be a part of hockey.
He says he’s on two minds about the issue. Yetman says in a fast-pace physical game like hockey where you have checking—an essential part of the game in his opinion—some players will “take liberties”. He says if you’re going to try to eliminate fights in hockey, then you have to take checking out.