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The Journal Gazette

  • File photo Komets forward Shawn Szydlowski, right, needs to be careful how often he fights this season. 

Wednesday, October 09, 2019 6:10 pm

Careful K's: frequent fighting could result in suspension

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

Players in the ECHL will have to be a little more mindful of how often they drop the gloves.

The ECHL will employ a new rule this season in which players who reach their 10th major penalty for fighting will be suspended from the next game. Each subsequent fighting major will bring with it another one-game suspension.

If a player reaches 14 fighting majors, he shall be suspended two games. And a subsequent fight would then result in a two-game suspension.

If a player fights but the opposing player received an instigation penalty for inciting it, then the fight shall not count against the first player’s log.

This is all part of Rule 23.7.

How big of a thing is this? Well, it’s going to come up, certainly. I’m a proponent of fighting’s place in hockey, so I’m not a big fan of it. But it shouldn’t be the hugest of deals. It’s not going to stop a player, I don’t believe, from rushing to protect a teammate in the correct circumstances.

According to information obtained from the ECHL, there were 18 players league-wide last season to hit the 10-fight mark. Only 15 players had 11 or more fights.

The Komets had only one player hit the 10-fight mark: Taylor Crunk, who had 13 fights before he was traded March 7. Shawn Szydlowski, Cody Sol and Craig Cescon had four fights apiece.

The Komets open the regular season 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Memorial Coliseum against the Kalamazoo Wings.

-- I strongly urge you to pick up a copy of The Journal Gazette on Friday. Our special section previewing the Komets' season will be there. Some great stories, and our Team of the Decade, will be unveiled.

jcohn@jg.net