Hockey is a game of trust. A shooter has faith that when he has a scoring chance, his disher will slide him the puck. A skilled player who takes an unnecessary lick knows that on the following shift, his toughest teammate will address the situation. One of the common motivational signs in the runways between the dressing rooms and ice reads, “Play for the man in front of you.”
The game’s supposed stewards at the NHL and the NHL Players Association have given no indications that anybody within their ranks should be granted that level of trust.