Hockey fans to protest violent hits

March 14, 2011 at 12:49 PM
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MONTREAL, March 14 (UPI) -- A Canadian hockey enthusiast says he wants fans to join him in a protest against the kind of violence that left a Montreal Canadiens player unconscious.

Victor Henriquez say he and many Canadiens fans are furious about the hit by Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara that left Max Pacioretty unconscious during an NHL game last Tuesday at Montreal's Bell Centre.

Pacioretty suffered a fractured vertebra and severe concussion.

"It scared me; I thought he had been killed or seriously injured and maybe paralyzed," Henriquez told Postmedia News.

Henriquez said he is organizing a fan demonstration Tuesday night before the Canadiens' next game against the Washington Capitals.

"Too often, when we hear about those hits, we hear the owners and head of the league saying fans want that, that it's part of the game and that's what fans like," he said. "We want them to understand that we like physical contact, we like a physical game, but we don't want anyone to get killed on the ice."

Protest organizers will circulate a petition urging the NHL to adopt new rules outlawing hits to the head as sports such as football and soccer have already done, Henriquez said.

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