Memo to Dan LeBatard:
Please don't talk about hockey if you don't even know what it is.
This isn't word for word, but on ESPN's Pardon the Interruption this afternoon, LeBatard asked Tony Kornheiser a question to the effect of "Why is it that when the NBA fights, there are 15 game suspensions and playoff implications, etc. but when it happens in the NHL it's normalcy?"
Again, that's not word for word, but the point is the same. Dan wants to know why fighting in hockey is allowed while there are massive suspensions when it happens in basketball. There are a lot of different factors at play here, namely that fighting is ingrained in hockey much as it is in boxing, but Dan, it would be better if you just kept some things to yourself.
You might as well go to England and ask them why they play cricket and not baseball. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that just as the cultures of England and America are different, so are the cultures of hockey and basketball.
There are really so many factors at play here, including the fact that LeBatard is simply a talking head who is trying to compare apples to french fries for effect, that this isn't even worth talking about. I could write a thesis on how asinine the question was, but I'll save it for questions that, you know, actually require rational thought.
Update (10/27): Shaved ice has a great piece on this subject:
Tony [Kornheiser]:"I'm sick of fights; I'm sick of designated goons. I know in the arena, these are very popular things. I thought as a culture, we had gone beyond this."
Yeah, which is why UFC is the fastest growing sport. Get over yourself. Clearly you have no idea that there is an unwritten code in hockey that still exists.
The audio of the aforementioned show can be found here. The exact quote from LeBatard:
LeBatard: "Do you ever wonder, do you ever wonder, I'm with you on this one too, do you ever wonder why the fights in the NBA, whenever there are fights in the NBA it's 15 game suspensions, it's craziness, it's rules that end up affecting the playoffs..."
Kornheiser: "And why not in hockey?"
LeBatard: (something inaudible about Amare Stoudamire) "...and in hockey nothing"