Truth & Rumors > NHL

Thornton sees no connection between deaths

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08:22 AM ET 09.13 | Shawn Thornton would prefer we not link the deaths of three former NHL players with the roles they played on the ice. NHL tough guys Derek Boogaard, Rick Rypien and Wade Belak all died this summer. Boogaard died in May due to an accidental mix of alcohol and the painkiller oxycodone, while the deaths of Rypien and Belak were both reportedly suicides. Some have even suggested that fighting should be banned from the sport, but Thornton is not among them. "No. No. And it kinda [expletive] [ticks] me off that people take this opportunity to try to exploit a certain part of the game," Thornton said. "Those are very sad instances and I don't think exploiting a part of the game is the right way to go."

ESPNBoston.com

Shawn Thornton, Getty Images Shawn Thornton, Getty Images
September 13, 2011  08:30 AM ET

Again, didn't we explore this a couple days ago? I know everyone want to recycle to help the environment and all. I don't think it applies to sports news.

September 13, 2011  09:12 AM ET

I must have missed it...busy weekend....but Thornton is right.
What is the point of trying to draw a connection here? So the guys/girls in the suits can point to this and wag their fingers at hockey and say "See...this is what happens!"

September 13, 2011  09:29 AM ET

May all 3 of those players RIP, but having said that, there really is no place in today's hockey for fighters/goons/enforcers. Thornton is just just trying to save his job and while I don't think teams need designated enforcers, fighting is definitely still a part of the game and should in no way be eliminated from it.

September 13, 2011  09:37 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

May all 3 of those players RIP, but having said that, there really is no place in today's hockey for fighters/goons/enforcers.

Thornton is just just trying to save his job and while I don't think teams need designated enforcers, fighting is definitely still a part of the game and should in no way be eliminated from it.

OK. I understand it now. I think.

September 13, 2011  09:46 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

May all 3 of those players RIP, but having said that, there really is no place in today's hockey for fighters/goons/enforcers. Thornton is just just trying to save his job and while I don't think teams need designated enforcers, fighting is definitely still a part of the game and should in no way be eliminated from it.

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I just figured it out. Bread Line is that guy that came on here the other day and started lambasting us and poo-pooing about how mean the hockey board is.

It has to be, because this is the same stupid fighting rant.

September 13, 2011  09:55 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

May all 3 of those players RIP, but having said that, there really is no place in today's hockey for fighters/goons/enforcers. Thornton is just just trying to save his job and while I don't think teams need designated enforcers, fighting is definitely still a part of the game and should in no way be eliminated from it.

Dude, you know that there is no designated fighter, right? So as long as fighting is in the game, its up to the team to decide whether to carry a goon or not. I dont see where this logic of keeping fighting in the game but taking out goons is supposed to work. How exactly do you achieve that? Make them do skills tests to see if theyre good enough to actually be in the lineup? Cut roster sizes (good luck getting that past the NHLPA)? Leave teams to the honour system?

Some teams (cough, Montreal) will just never suit up a guy that can fight, while others (Islanders, Penguins, Flyers) are more than happy to have several goons suit up. It comes down to each teams philosophy and choice on how to play the game and how to use their roster spots.

As per Thornton, dunno if you actually watch hockey, but he plays a regular shift and plays some pretty good hockey. By no means is he a Rypien or Boogeyman.

September 13, 2011  10:22 AM ET
QUOTE(#4):

OK. I understand it now. I think.

I concur....

First he says black, then he covers it up in shades of whiteish grey.

God knows what he really meant.

September 13, 2011  11:25 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

May all 3 of those players RIP, but having said that, there really is no place in today's hockey for fighters/goons/enforcers. Thornton is just just trying to save his job and while I don't think teams need designated enforcers, fighting is definitely still a part of the game and should in no way be eliminated from it.

One word...HUH

September 13, 2011  11:27 AM ET
QUOTE(#7):

I concur....

First he says black, then he covers it up in shades of whiteish grey.

God knows what he really meant.

This might help Hank.

September 13, 2011  11:48 AM ET
QUOTE(#8):

One word...HUH

A player like Boogaard hurts the team, fighting still belongs in the game, the NHL needs to protect it's players, Thornton wants to keep his job. Enter those factors in the equation above and figure it out. Fighting in hockey is not black and white

September 13, 2011  12:01 PM ET
QUOTE(#10):

A player like Boogaard hurts the team, fighting still belongs in the game, the NHL needs to protect it's players, Thornton wants to keep his job. Enter those factors in the equation above and figure it out. Fighting in hockey is not black and white

You said - "but having said that, there really is no place in today's hockey for fighters/goons/enforcers."

Then you said - "fighting is definitely still a part of the game and should in no way be eliminated from it."

So I stand by my statement of HUH. I get it now, you are a Leafs fan, so no explanation is needed.

September 13, 2011  12:05 PM ET
QUOTE(#11):

You said - "but having said that, there really is no place in today's hockey for fighters/goons/enforcers."Then you said - "fighting is definitely still a part of the game and should in no way be eliminated from it."So I stand by my statement of HUH. I get it now, you are a Leafs fan, so no explanation is needed.

Pretty sure you don't have to be an enforcer to drop the gloves. The Datsyuk v Perry fight might have been the most entertaining one all year. Staged fights between enforcers becuase they "have to" to keep their jobs are bad for the game. And I'm not a Leafs fan.

September 13, 2011  12:09 PM ET

Maybe we should institute a questionnaire for hockey players and assess their true skills:

Have you scored a goal or an assist lately?
Have you been put in the penalty box for more than 100 minutes?
Have you fought on ice in the last three games?
Have you attempted to find a fight in the last three games?

Answers reflecting negatively result in the player being laid off from the sport. And you know where they'll be then? The Bread Line.

September 13, 2011  12:12 PM ET
QUOTE(#13):

Maybe we should institute a questionnaire for hockey players and assess their true skills:Have you scored a goal or an assist lately?Have you been put in the penalty box for more than 100 minutes?Have you fought on ice in the last three games?Have you attempted to find a fight in the last three games?Answers reflecting negatively result in the player being laid off from the sport. And you know where they'll be then? The Bread Line.

No I don't, do you?

September 13, 2011  12:14 PM ET
QUOTE(#10):

A player like Boogaard hurts the team, fighting still belongs in the game, the NHL needs to protect it's players, Thornton wants to keep his job. Enter those factors in the equation above and figure it out. Fighting in hockey is not black and white

i dont know if youve ever watched thornton play but not only is he an enforcer but he plays a pretty well rounded game, pretty much any team would pick him up as a 3rd or 4th line winger..he actually has a pretty legit shot

September 13, 2011  12:18 PM ET
QUOTE(#12):

Pretty sure you don't have to be an enforcer to drop the gloves. The Datsyuk v Perry fight might have been the most entertaining one all year. Staged fights between enforcers becuase they "have to" to keep their jobs are bad for the game. And I'm not a Leafs fan.

I love a dust up between hired goons.

And I'm not a Leaf's fan.

September 13, 2011  12:19 PM ET
QUOTE(#15):

i dont know if youve ever watched thornton play but not only is he an enforcer but he plays a pretty well rounded game, pretty much any team would pick him up as a 3rd or 4th line winger..he actually has a pretty legit shot

When he brought his energy into the Canuck's series everything changed.

September 13, 2011  12:29 PM ET
QUOTE(#17):

When he brought his energy into the Canuck's series everything changed.

there is a spot in the garden where the players before the game hang out and he leads the team in different warm ups before the games, one time i saw them kicking around a hackey sack another time it was a soccer ball..just hanging out signing autographs loosening up...

September 13, 2011  12:37 PM ET
QUOTE(#16):

I love a dust up between hired goons. And I'm not a Leaf's fan.

pretty sure argos is the only one of those around here...or alteast willing to admit it in a public forum

 
September 13, 2011  12:38 PM ET
QUOTE(#14):

No I don't, do you?

Wow. Just... Wow. Go see a doctor; you my friend are definitely irony deficient.

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