A REAL, EFFECTIVE Way To Get Rid of Obstruction

I was thinking about the obstruction problem. By this point, everyone should realize that referees are not going to fix it (we differ on the reasons referees won’t fix it, but that’s not my point here…let’s not turn this into another “refs suck!” thread).
Unfortunately, there is just too much obstruction in the game to effectively curb it w/ penalties…when you try that, the game just turns into an endless series of power plays, which can be more boring to watch than than the trap (carry it into the zone, defense takes it, clears it down the ice, carry it into the zone, defense takes it, clears it down the ice, carry it into the zone, keep it there, pass, pass, pass, pass *continue for 45 seconds* shoot, defense takes it, clears it down the ice).

So what can you do over and over and over again (potentially 50 times a game) to discourage obstruction, that won’t destroy the flow and integrity of the game?

This is been an intense topic of debate for a long time, and nobody’s been able to come up w/ an effective solution. Then, when I was reading that thread about diving, it hit me. Its so obvious, I can’t believe that I didn’t think of it sooner.

Call obstruction like the refs have been calling it. Infrequently, only if it prevents a goal type thing.

Instead, after every game, have a bunch of video replay ppl watch the entire game from a camera angle that will cover the entire ice (or watch it live for the same effect). Have them count the obstruction charges each individual player commits. Then, FINE that player 10,000 dollars for every offense.

Think about it. Say a certain player averages obstructing an opposing player 5 times a game over the course of a season (reasonable estimate, I think). Multiply 5 by 82. That’s 410 cases of obstruction if I did my math right. *checks w/ calculator* Yep. At 10,000 dollars per obstruction, that player would lose 4,100,000 dollars!!!!

Do the math on even less. If they committ one obstruction a game for the entire season, they’d lose 820,000 dollars. That would wipe out just about the entire salary for half the league. Even better, the less money you make (and thus generally the more likely you are to obstruct, b/c you’re a defensive role player), the less you can afford to obstruct. Obstruction would VANISH off the face of the earth in two weeks. The entire problem would be solved instantly and permanently.

I’m sure the NHLPA would howl like wolves, of course. But I’m pretty sure the NHL can legally apply whatever fines they want, and as I’m sure they’ll point out, all the player has to do is not obstruct anyone, and they won’t lose a penny.

I GUARANTEE this idea would work. It would work better than any reffing system you could possibly come up with. If someone could provide me w/ an e-mail address to Campbell or Bettman or something, I would e-mail this idea to them right now. It would solve all the obstruction problems in the NHL just like that.


25 Responses to A REAL, EFFECTIVE Way To Get Rid of Obstruction

  1. qwertyuiop127 says:

    Wow, that’s crazy……..but it just might work….

  2. rrudd says:

    $10,000?

    nobody in anaheim would make any money.

    you’d have to make the fine $1 for any of them to break even.

  3. Biffster says:

    I’m sure the NHLPA will LOVE that idea.

  4. aaron says:

    That’s the point. If they lose all their money doing it, they won’t do it.

  5. kozzy_ says:

    In sorry but what about guys who are making lets say 1 mil a year? Or don’t make a Fedorov type of salary, and are they going to end up paying thousands to play hockey? I also think it’s a waste of time and money to have video replay people sit there and right down every obstruction and fine a play such a great amount of money. What about a player that does a bigger obstruction than another? How come he is fined the same amount?

    I don’t think you thought this through…

  6. Zamboni says:

    Poor Federov and Giguere, their couches are gonna be packed with their newly broke and homeless teammates…

  7. aafiv says:

    … the game would disappear. With an average salary at just under $2 Million, an average yearly fine of $4 Million would drive all of the players that play the game out of it.

  8. aaron says:

    You’re missing the point. The point of eliminating obstruction is that there will be no more obstruction. I’m saying right now, average yearly fines would be 4 million dollars. Obviously, players can’t afford this, so they won’t obstruct.

    If you want to eliminate obstruction completely, do it this way. You can only call 5-6 obstruction penalties on a team a game before fans get angry. You can fine players 500 times a game if you need to. This will completely eliminate all obstruction from the sport of hockey in a matter of weeks (and if there is 0 obstruction, the players don’t lose any money, that simple).

  9. aaron says:

    Waste of money? If a video replay person finds 5 cases of obstruction over the course of a season, he just paid his salary and then some.

    Guys who make 1 million a year sure as hell better not obstruct. Regardless, am I going to shed a tear if through their own stupidity, they manage to knock their salary down to 50,000 a year? Oh no, how could anyone survive w/ a 50,000 dollar salary?!!?!?

    Do you give a player a 2:32 second penalty if they do a big obstruction, and a 1:46 second penalty if its just a tiny obstruction? How come they all get 2:00 penalties when some players obstruct worse than other players?

    Besides, this is to eliminate ALL obstruction COMPLETELY. Big or small.

  10. Zamboni says:

    Here’s the scenario:

    Western Conference Finals, Game 7, deep in OT…

    I’m Derian Hatcher. I’m the last man back, and Mike Modano has just deked me out of my skates.

    Do I:

    a) Say “Geez, I can’t afford $10,000, better let him breakaway…”

    b) Say “Thank God the refs aren’t calling obstruction penalties anymore, this tackle is gonna make SportsCenter for sure!”

    What I’m saying is that as imperfect as the refs are in calling penalties sometimes, you can’t just take away the whistles. A fine on top of a penalty might work, kinda like the “diver’s list” was supposed to last year. Obviously, that was a flawed system too, but with some fine tuning, it could be salvagable.

  11. Zamboni says:

    “That’s the point. If they lose all their money doing it, they won’t do it.”

    Which is exactly why the NHLPA will NEVER agree to this and it will never happen.

  12. yoda0037 says:

    it would work, not that much $ thou guys that don’t make all that much(the guys that make league min.) would be working for free Jacobs would loves that idea..and the players who would really benefit for it would be guys like Thornton,Forsberg.

  13. wrightstuff77 says:

    Wow, an original idea, I think like most people i agree your asking a little much. I wouldn’t work in an office where I was charged for typo’s. At the same time I don’t make the money these guys are making. All that to say I believe it’s a good first attepmt at an idea which just needs a happy medium.

    Instead of fining $10,000 what about fining $100-$500. All of the money would go to the NHLPA who could then set up a fund and do whatever they wanted with it, as long as it wasn’t paying back the offender. There was some comment that there would need to be a huge number of people reviewing eacch game at what is assumed to be a salary of $50,00 grand per year. I’d think that 15 new hires at $30,000 per year might well be worth the investment for the NHL to make on it’s own.

    I like the idea though, I just think it ould have to be carefully considered, and maybe tested in pre-season or AHL.

    Cory

  14. matteo says:

    I can’t even justify that with a real answer. Besides,

    most of the guys who clutch and grab are low-paid players…..not million dollar superstars.

    Not to mention players would be so afraid to mix it up the game would start to look like pee wee soccer and would suck moose balls(I know you leaf fans know about sucking moose balls).

    I think HTR should impose a fine on stupid articles and start charging Leaf Fans for posting the exact same “What the Leafs Need to Do” or “Leafs off-season Report” or “How the Leaf Expert Stole Channuka” article that just appeared 3 hours ago.

    Maybe that will deter those wascawwy wabbits fwom the gweat white nowth…..huhuhuhuhuhuh.

    SCTP – We are Elmer J Fudd Millionaire, we own a mansion and a yacht.

  15. aaron says:

    I realize that…for things like that, they’d still be penalties, not fines (obstruction that prevents a scoring chance). Its just the behind the scenes crap that would be eliminated. Besides, Darien Hatcher can take an occasional 10,000 dollar hit.

  16. aaron says:

    You ppl are missing the point. The players won’t lose any money b/c they’ll stop obstructing once it becomes obvious how much its going to cost them.

    You’re acting like you don’t want to stop obstruction, just penalize ppl for doing it (while making no dent in the actual obstruction occurring). This will stop it completely. And it won’t be pee wee hockey…players will just start hitting each other instead of hooking each other.

    Anyways, I thought you wanted to go back to 80s/90’s hockey, where defense was incompetant, the game went back and forth w/ no physical battles, and the stars controlled the game? Now you’re saying you like obstruction?

  17. aaron says:

    I’m pretty sure the NHL can levy fines w/o consulting the NHLPA (that’s what they’re talking about doing w/ goalie pads, they fine coaches/players all the time for comments, and every suspension comes w/ an automatic fine). Anyway, the players don’t have to lose a dime. Just a little self control…when you see the guy skate by you, don’t stick your stick around his waist and haul him down. There, problem solved.

  18. aaron says:

    I don’t think 500 dollars would be enough. You could still obstruct someone 2 times a game, and only lose 82,000 dollars (which is nothing to these players). That would still work out to each team committing 40 obstruction penalties a game.

    10,000 dollars would eliminate it entirely. Nobody would ever obstruct. If you actually want to stop obstruction, that would be the quickest, easiest way.

  19. matteo says:

    I like it so much maybe someone should obstruct you from getting to your keyboard.

  20. Nyteshades says:

    If you really wanted to get rid of the trap and defensive hockey, get rid of the red line and make 2 line passes legal. That would blow open the game and make it much more offensive. And do something about the moving foam walls in front of the net, errr I mean the goalies.

  21. tweenerz says:

    I like the idea of getting rid of the red line, but it would lend itself to cherry pickers near the end of a game when a team is down. But, on the other hand, the d would have to make a decision to cover the picker or take advantage of the extra man in the zone. It could work – it would keep the defense on its toes.

    As for the two line pass, how exactly would you make a two line pass anyway? If you make it across both blue lines, you would be offsides.

  22. Octopus says:

    Just take half of the money all those those overpaid players earn for more or less effort to score goals (even Steve Y doesn’t deserve 6 Mio a year, although he is my favourite player, he simply plays on plastic knees or what ever?) and increase the ice surface to the Europe format.

    Did you watch Sweden storming back after a 1 to 5 deficit in the world championship against Finland? Me neither, but I saw it on tape. Did you saw Hull hooking like hell every Anaheim forward in the neutral zone in this years PO’s?

    More space for all Slovakian or Czech or Swedish or Russian or Canadian or what ever top scores and Hatcher & Co. check nothing but empty boards.

    Obstruction kills hockey.

    Fights should remain as a matter of self-control/police as well as 5 against 5.

    Also whatch the goalie equipment more carefully.

    Greetings from Europe!

  23. Octopus says:

    Just take half of the money all those those overpaid players earn for more or less effort to score goals (even Steve Y doesn’t deserve 6 Mio a year, although he is my favourite player, he simply plays on plastic knees or what ever?) and increase the ice surface to the Europe format.

    Did you watch Sweden storming back after a 1 to 5 deficit in the world championship against Finland? Me neither, but I saw it on tape. Did you saw Hull hooking like hell every Anaheim forward in the neutral zone in this years PO’s?

    More space for all Slovakian or Czech or Swedish or Russian or Canadian or what ever top scores and Hatcher & Co. check nothing but empty boards.

    Obstruction kills hockey.

    Fights should remain as a matter of self-control/police as well as 5 against 5.

    Also whatch the goalie equipment more carefully.

    Greetings from Europe!

  24. sluggo says:

    I agree that calling the game more strick would cause a lot more penalties AT FIRST, but after a while (maybe a season) if the refs stick to their guns, the players will stop testing them and obey the rules. They are like children, once they know they can’t get away with something they will stop.

    I would also make all penalties served to their completion, none of this “once the team scores its over” crap, if you get 2 minutes in the box its 2 minutes in the box (same as a major).

  25. swisswing says:

    why not make penalties longer like 3 or 4 min

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