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Shelley talks about fighting

Jody Shelley tells why there's still room for fighting in hockey and what kind of opponents are the toughest to face one on one.

"Usually fights calm the game down", he starts. "And that's just the way it is; the fans really like to see fights."

"Sometimes it wakes up the team that doesn't play with much energy or if they're down in the game, sometimes it swings the momentum and sometimes it just makes the other team's fans quiet."

"The meaning of a fight is to remind your teammates that 'hey, we need more energy and emotion in the game and we're not here to just surf around'."

Shelley says he's ready to go with anyone.

"No, I definitely won't back off from anyone. Backing off is not a part of my job. My job is to fight with anyone who's ready to drop their gloves."

But timing is crucial.

"It always depends on the game. You don't have to start a fight if the game doesn't need one."

One reason to start a fight is to defend teammates.

"If someone tries to hurt Mike, Jeff, Kimmo, Ville or anyone who doesn't fight, that's what makes my blood boil."

While Shelley has had his fair share of fights during his career, he refuses to rank fighters in order.

"No, I don't rank anyone anyhow. That's a job for the media and the fans who go to the games or watch them on TV."

But Shelley can say what kind of fighters are the toughest to face.

"The ones who just attack you over and over again. It's hard to fight against someone like that."

In the end, Shelley says that you have to evaluate your dance partner quickly before going at it, because everyone is different.

"Some guys are huge, some guys are small. They all hit you with different styles."


This report was based off of a Finnish-language story released by STT.

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