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The Colorado Avalanche: News from around the NHL - October 24th, 2013

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If players lose their buckets before a fight, the fight will be stopped.

Hockey helmets are an excellent hedge against skull fractures, but they can be an occupational hazard for those who regularly drop their gloves.

It’s why many players shed them before they start throwing punches – a practice the NHL is going to new lengths to curb.

Linesmen have been directed to step in where possible whenever would-be combatants toss their helmets away, which is exactly what they did amid much puzzlement from fans and players at the Bell Centre on Tuesday.

Laraque may be facing fraud charges, but he doesn't think that would be a distraction if he returned to the ice.

With his political career on hold while he fights fraud charges, Georges Laraque is expressing a willingness to return to his previous vocation: hockey pugilist.

The ex-NHL enforcer says he’s just the guy to add some muscle to the Montreal Canadiens bench.

Laraque, who turns 37 next month, says he’s perfectly healthy and can fill the gap left by the injured George Parros and Brandon Prust, although his NHL stint saw him sidelined by injuries several times.

"Sure I could help them," Laraque said Wednesday at a news conference announcing his replacement as the Green party candidate in a Montreal-area federal byelection.

Cody McLeod is not looking to injure players out there.

Avalanche forward Cody Mc- Leod outlasted well-known rink rat Ryan O'Reilly after practice Wednesday, working on conditioning during his five-game NHL suspension. McLeod, who was assessed the first suspension of his career for his boarding major that injured Detroit Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall last Thursday, took off his gear and spoke to The Denver Post after his teammates showered and had lunch.

"I can see where the NHL is coming from," McLeod said in his first public comments about the incident. "They want to get rid of the injuries and I respect that, but I don't necessarily agree with the length of time. But it's out of my hands and we'll just move on."