When I was but Nemesis22 1/2, one of the many things I admired about hockey was that it's players were incredibly tough. Real men (and women) who would shrug off a shoulder crunching hit, or a crosscheck to the teeth. Someone once said "blood is only red sweat."
However, in the last few years, there seems to be a very nasty trend emerging. One of embellishment, or diving, if you will. This reprehensible practice is roundly condemned by team managers, until one of their players do it. I am sure that Avs players have taken the odd dive to sell the call to the refs, but it is dishonourable and despicable (in the truest sense of the word).
For those two people who missed it, here is Joe Thornton's Olympic quality dive, from Puck Daddy:
Joe Thornton is 6'4 and 230 lbs. I have seen harder sticktaps for goals scored and yet he goes down like there was a sniper in the stands. In the penalty box he couldn't stop laughing. Either that or he was "grimacing in pain" from his amazing injury.
I hate football (soccer) because of diving and embellishment, as well as the spoilt brattiness of a lot of football players.
For examples of where hockey could be going see here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ioyt2zzm530 (apologies for the poor quality)
The league has said that it wants to clamp down on it. League disciplinarian Colin Campbell who is renowned throughout the sporting world for his consistency and fairness had this to say:
"Diving is increased in the playoffs as the stakes are higher, and when players get desperate, they take their credibility and their honour and they throw it out the window."
"Through our supervisors, we warned all the teams not to embellish. It's becoming rampant, and we're going to start calling it. We'll ramp it up next round. You may not like it, but we'll point out the guys who we feel will embellish calls"
This almost certainly would have to happen post-game as these things can happen behind the play and without the refs seeing it, but what should the league do to send a clear message that diving will not be tolerated?
I sincerely hope that the NHL does something firm about this, to rid the sport of this reprehensible practice. Unsportsmanlike conduct should cover the offence, unless there is a specific embellishment one?
What say you, fellow MHHers?