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Ice Chips

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Something to discuss

I had an interesting little discussion on twitter – I’m @jgkomets, by the way – after a reader had learned that there was almost a fight during the first scrimmage of training camp.

The reader was incensed something like that would go on.

“I know you’re a part of the old school, but it’s called ‘hockey,’ ” he wrote. “I prefer a team of tough guys who can deliver hits not fights. ... If you can’t make it on hockey skill alone then maybe you should drop down a level and hone your skills a bit more. ... Is fighting still a part of the game? Yes. But you have to admit its becoming less and less a part of the game. ... I’d hate to see a guy who can only skate and punch take the spot of a good defensive d-man. ... I say save it for preseason games. Surely Al (Sims) and the coaches know it’s a part of his skill set. Prove the puck skills in camp. And if you make it through, camp then go toe to toe with an IceMen player. They like to fight.”

I guess I don’t have a problem with a good training camp fight. Anywhere from eight to 15 players will be cut during training camp, and players need to carve all sorts of niches and show they can fill all sorts of roles. For a player who wants to prove he can fight, he may not be able to wait until the two exhibition games; what if he gets cut first or only gets a few shifts? As long as both combatants are willing, I’m fine with it.

Think about Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock as a rookie. He wasn’t going to wow anyone with his scoring prowess. And he’s not the biggest guy. He had to prove he could skate, hit, play defense and fight just as good as a guy who is 6-foot-5.

What do you think?

By the way, make sure you check out today’s story on the Komets’ scrimmages, along with the video from Sunday: Click here.

Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at