I wrote about overhauling the NHL's discipline policy with the intent of preventing unsafe plays. My idea is based on my dad's idea:
...a player who injures another in a "non-hockey play", or who has been found intending to injure will be suspended according to the current NHL precedent. There's nothing ground-breaking there. However, it's the second portion of the punishment that explores a new, and more effective, territory. While your thug (Zack Kassian, Matt Cooke, Daniel Carcillo, Chris Neil, or any other untalented hack) will be suspended using NHL precedent, their equivalent teammate will be suspended for the duration of the injury caused.
Below is the list of suspensions handed out to this point:
|Paul Bissonnette||Automatic suspension for leaving the bench to initiate a fight with Jordan Nolan||3 ps games, 7 reg season games|
|Teemu Pulkkinen||Boarding Mike Kostka||4 ps games|
|Adam Erne||Illegal check to the head of Vladimir Sobotka||3 ps games, 5 reg season games|
|Dale Weise||Illegal check to the head of Taylor Hall||3 ps games|
|Zack Kassian||High-sticking Sam Gagner||3 ps games, 5 reg season games|
|David Clarkson||Automatic suspension for leaving the bench to initiate a fight with John Scott||10 games|
|Phil Kessel||Slashing John Scott||3 ps games|
What does the suspension list look like after the new policy is applied?
That list is below:
|Original Offender||Infraction||Also suspended||Length|
|Paul Bissonnette||Leaving the bench to initiate a fight with Jordan Nolan||Rob Klinkhammer||10 games|
|Teemu Pulkkinen||Boarding Mike Kostka||Justin Abdelkader||4 games|
|Adam Erne||Illegal check to the head of Vladimir Sobotka||Lauri Korpikoski||3 games|
|Dale Weise||Illegal check to the head of Taylor Hall||Henrik Sedin||3 games|
|Zack Kassian||High-sticking Sam Gagner||Daniel Sedin||Indefinite|
|David Clarkson||Leaving the bench to initiate a fight with John Scott||Colton Orr||10 games|
|Phil Kessel||Slashing John Scott||Fraser McLaren||3 games|
Somehow the Leafs got better after David Clarkson and Phil Kessel send their own goons on vacation. Every other team suffers because of their goon, the ideal way to remove that sort of play from the game. The Canucks lose both Henrik and Daniel Sedin - that's a loss that would change a team's approach to employing goons.
If you're looking for deterrence, real deterrence, punish the team for the transgression and watch how quickly they police the game themselves.