What kind of game do we want ice hockey to be? Do we want a very physical game with lots of hitting from behind and head contact or do we want the game we once had, a game of skill and respect along with legal physical play?
The game of ice hockey has not always been played as it is now. Checking was not permitted by attacking players in the offensive zone until the mid 1970’s. The center red line created another point that slowed the game down a bit and there was no tag-up offsides, so defensemen actually had to learn some skills to survive in neutral ice until their linemates got back onside.
What is the future of youth ice hockey? Will it continue to be a game of illegal hits to the hitting, interfering, intimidation, and trash-talking opponents, or one rewarding speed, skill, and physical play within the rules? Only time will tell.