We have heard a number of NHL General Managers say it over the years: “We don’t want to take physicality out of the game.”
Devils forward Taylor Hall sent Canucks defenceman Philip Larsen to the hospital Tuesday night with a body check behind the net. Larsen laid motionless on the ice before being taken away on a stretcher.
The debate rages about whether or not the Hall hit was legal.
The hit looked legal to me. Larsen was behind the net with his head down when Hall sent him to the ice with a body check that appeared to be within the rules of the game.
Canucks coach Willie Desjardins said he had a problem with the hit, but admitted every coach has a problem with a hit when his player suffers a serious injury.
Hall was making what they call a “hockey play.” Unfortunately, with NHL players now bigger, stronger and faster than they have ever been, it won’t be the last time we witness what we saw on Tuesday.
It’s the reality of physicality in the game.