If you plan on becoming an enforcer on the ice then you will have to learn how to hockey fight. Fighting in hockey has existed as long as the sport of hockey itself. Most of the time those that will fight in hockey are the enforcers or “cement heads”. The reason they fight is often enforce a level of protection of their teammates. Luckily, there are actually rules and techniques to hockey fighting.
- Make sure you can skate well. If you are not able to skate well then you are already at a huge disadvantage in a hockey fight.
- Drop your gloves on the ice. This is where the phrase “the gloves are off” came from. By dropping gloves onto the ice, this signals to the opponent that the fight is on.
- Disable your opponent. This technique is often called “jersey the opponent” and is done by pulling the opponents jersey over their head disabling their arms and movement, giving you the exceptional advantage.
- Make contact with as many blows as possible. While your opponent is disabled use a rapid fire technique to hit them as many times as possible.
- Separate from the fight but do not retreat. What this means is that after you have inflicted as much damage as you can to your opponent, slowly remove yourself from the fight. You want to do this in a manner that does not look like a retreat but may invoke your opponent to come after you. This can make them look like an aggressor and draw a penalty while reducing yours. This was a favorite trick of Gordie Howe.
- Always respect the referee. If the referee steps in to stop a fight that means its time to quit. Continuing to fight or attempting to fight will only draw additional time in the box and can hurt your team.
Enforcers play an important role on a hockey team. They make players think twice about breaking certain unwritten rules like checking a goalie or attempting to cause injury to another player. Hockey fighting is a tradition in the sport, so learning how to hockey fight is as important as learning shoot the puck for some players.