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Hodgemail: 'What's your best advice for Brendan Shanahan?'

TSN.ca Staff

10/5/2011 8:56:18 PM

TSN's Dave Hodge sounds off on all the hockey issues of the day in Hodgemail.

The NHL pre-season is all about hard work and preparation - and few will argue that the busiest person in the league these days is Brendan Shanahan.

The league's new disciplinarian has already handed down 60 games worth of suspensions this past month to nine NHL players and there was hardly a day that went by where we didn't see a new video with detailed explanation.

Many have applauded his crackdown on head shots and other offences, but others are concerned that it may eventually turn the game into a non-contact sport.

And those around the game continue to debate the issue of head shots. Shanahan also said recently that fighting and the obvious safety concerns have been discussed by the league and while it's a sensitive issue for some, there will be ongoing discussions on that as well.

When all is said and done, the NHL's disciplinarian will have his hands full for a very long time.

So here was Dave's question to you: "What is your best advice for Brendan Shanahan?"

"Apologize to Clarke MacArthur and Chris Campoli and keep on getting most of them right." -John

"My best advice? Don't listen to advice, mine or anybody else's. Do it your way." -Tracey

"Quit your job while people still like you." -Dewy 03

"Be consistent and be consistently harsh. Don't adjust because of who it is, the team he plays for or when it happens." -Curt

"With so many dirty hits, I wasn't going to bother with hockey this season. You've changed my mind. Keep it up." -Matt

"The number of suspensions is absurd. Let the players police themselves and get rid of the instigator rule." -Boyd

And Dave's reply to all:

Well, I'm tempted to tell Brendan Shanahan to make a comeback - because getting back on the ice may be the only way to rid himself of the frustration that he must feel already.

He could turn his desk, his video equipment, and his cures for insomnia over to a successor, and he could set out to prove that physical hockey still has a place in the nhl - while avoiding suspensions, of course.

But he's not going to do that. So he should persevere, of course. He should keep suspending and keep explaining and do his job, which is to make the NHL a safer place to play. Sure, it's a thankless job, but it's a noble venture, and it can be rewarding.

If every NHL player had a chance to leave a greater mark on the game in retirement than he left on the ice, many would take up that challenge. Shanahan has done that, and his opportunity is greater than most.

Let's hope he succeeds.