Ok, as I said, people around the NHL are vilifying Steve Downie for his hit on Dean McAmmond.
The league has yet to announce its ruling on the matter, but pundits in Canada think it won't be all that serious and I happen to agree. They are saying it will take a death on the ice to curb this behavior and force the NHL to increase the penalties/suspensions for head shots. Personally I don't think that harsher penalties will curb the headhunting ...
You know what will? Getting rid of that ridiculous instigator penalty.
Now I've been railing against the stupid penalty since it was put into effect. The 'new' NHL is a speed game that pretty much requires a team to have four capable lines so keeping a slow-ass goon in the lineup is a detriment. But with expansion, let's face it, there aren't that many tough power forwards to go around (like Jarome Iginla) so a good goon is still required, but just one that can skate.
Guys like Pete Worrell and Krzysztof Oliwa are gone, and have been replaced by the Andrew Peters and that piece of garbage Donald Brashear.
With super pests like Ben Eager and Downie hitting everything that moves and other guys taking liberties with their sticks, now is the time to drop the instigator and allow for the players to stand up for their teammates without costing their team.