NAHL Tightens Fighting Rules for 2014-15 - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

NAHL Tightens Fighting Rules for 2014-15

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USA Hockey, the governing body that oversees Tier I and II junior hockey in the US, including the North American Hockey League, has announced new, tougher rules against fighting.

Starting in 2014-15, any fighting major will be automatically accompanied by a 10-minute misconduct penalty, increasing the standard penalty for a fight from five to 15 minutes.

Newschannel 6 reached out to Wichita Falls Wildcats assistant coach Chris Ceransky, who said after researching the issue, he wasn't as opposed to it as he expected to be.

"I thought I would mind it a lot more than I did," Ceransky said Tuesday. "When you really look into it, and you see what injuries can stem from it, and when you really look at the science behind it, it doesn't hurt."

Ceransky said that there is more fighting in junior hockey in the past few seasons than there is in the NHL. "I don't see any reason why there's 16, 17, 18-year-old kids fighting more than 25-30-year-old adults do," he said.

As for fans who say they only go to games for the fights, Ceransky was skeptical.

"I just can't see people playing $12-15 to come see a 20-second fight, that we have once a game, and then sitting through the rest of the hockey game," he said.

"You know, I think the hockey's going to shine through a lot more now. You'll see less teams taking the 6'5" guy who can't skate or shoot because he can keep guys honest on the ice, and you'll see a lot more guys who can skate, who should play at the college level. That's why I would pay 12 dollars to come see a hockey game."

"And," he added, "We still sell beer."

The 2014-15 Wichita Falls Wildcats season begins September 13th at home against the Odessa Jackalopes.