I watched it last night. Exhaustive on the subject including a somewhat humorous exploration of "the code" that Now Hang Up touched on above. They also had a brief clip of a certain NHU relative making his feelings about the lack of enforcement in modern hockey very clear.
The doc does a good job of looking at fighting warts and all and certainly does not hide from the warts. I think it did a good job of not lionizing fighting too much, though it's pretty clear on which side of the divide they come down. I think, ultimately, they make a pretty compelling case.
He was interviewed in Buffalo because he's going to be in town for a celebrity roast of Danny Gare. Anyway, he mentioned that he actually dreaded having to fight, but he knew that it was his role from the moment that he started his minor league career with a few fights (despite being a consistent scorer in juniors). When playing Boston, Terry O'Reilly would make it his responsibility to fight Schultz and the two eventually fought eight times over their careers.
Rob Ray often discusses his reticence and trepidation about fighting. Some people might think that he and Tie Domi (among others) mixing it up, but for Ray and probably for most, that wasn't the case.
pummeled Brad Park for no good reason at all. The worst thing in hockey in 1973-1978 was to be up 3-0 or down 3-0 to the Flyers. Either way, shit was going down.
not many people realize that one year (forget which) Taz nearly cracked the 100-point barrier. I'm pretty sure the Hammer never came close. Between him, Hound Kelly, Dornhoefer, and Homlgren that was a tough crew. Add in Booby Clark and his (very) loose stick - just ask Valeri Kharamov.
I've seen highlights of the fog game between Buffalo and Philly with former Sabres announcer Jim Lorentz killing a bat, and heard some of the stories, but it's another world for me. Schultz never scored more than 40 points in a year and he said on his interview that he got sent down to Rochester by Scotty Bowman after a brief stint in Buffalo, which effectively ended his NHL career.
I enjoy hearing about those days. I'm sure I would've enjoyed that era of hockey.
EDIT- linking an interesting story that I found from Schultz from the NYT in 1982 with some regrets about his career.
and the clash of styles between the Bullies and the French Connection. Perreault was a guy that the lunatics in Montreal always thought they somehow got screwed on getting.
more dangerous in the past few years because of the severe cutback in fighting and the resulting removal of "enforcers" from the game. You now see a lot more stick work, bad board hits, etc by guys who would probably restrain themselves more if they knew that the next shift could send then to the quiet room.
A recent survey of all NHL players found that 98% of them are against the banning of fighting in the game. They are the people who play the game and are in the dressing rooms. They know how important it is to their safety. With players getting bigger, faster and stronger and flying around the ice over 30 mph it is the fights and the threat of facing a fight that keeps a lot of the cheap shots from happening. They think it keeps order in the game that would otherwise disappear.