WHL bans staged fighting
The Western Hockey League will start its season this weekend with new rules that have banned staged fighting from the game.
The league defines staged fights as those where players start a scrap right after a faceoff.
The new rules state if any player is involved in a staged fight, they'll be tossed out of the game.
Prince Albert's Raiders aren't too worried about the new rules because they said they don't have an enforcer on the team.
"I don't think it's a bad idea," said Steve Young, head coach of the Raiders. "Obviously I think that people agree that fighting belongs in the game. I think it's the staged stuff we have to keep away from."
Some players don't think the new rules will affect their playing style too much either.
"I don't really do much staged fighting," said Chance Braid, who plays left wing for the Raiders. "I usually make hits or something and then get started in fights."
His teammate, Harrison Ruopp, who plays defence, agrees.
"I think that if they really want to fight, they'll find ways to do it within the rules," said Ruopp.
The WHL isn't the only league cracking down on fighting this year. The Ontario Hockey League is suspending players who fight more than 10 times in a season.