] For the record, this isn't the first time Bertuzzi has
] showed poor judgment with his use of aggression. He broke
] the nose of defenseman Karlis Skrastins, a non-fighter
] who's yet to crack 50 minutes in penalties in a single
] season, last year. He's been suspended for hitting an
] official, who was breaking up a fight Bertuzzi wouldn't
] back down from. He left the bench to participate in an an
] altercation four games into the 2001-02 season and was
] suspended 10 games, a penalty that arguably cost him the
] scoring title.
I don't like what Kelly is trying to get the reader to conclude. Fighting and other roughing has a place in hockey. If the instigator rule was not present, you would not see cheap shots and hits from behind, because the players would police it better. The argument has always been that removing the instigator rule will just escalate confrontation, but it's done the exact opposite. With no penalty for cheap shots, they have just escalated into cowardly actions like Bertuzzi's. No player should ever have to engage another from behind. Period. But that doesn't mean that fighting needs to be removed.