Hockey is a rough-and-tumble game. For a lot of fans, the hard checks and fights are an important part of the sport’s appeal. Others would prefer to see fighting legislated out of the game altogether. Dakota Rapids C Harvey Bellmore, though, proposed a creative compromise this week.
Bellmore was interviewed be reporters after the Rapids’ 2-1 loss to Michigan, a game marred by chippy play (largely instigated by the famously aggressive Grey Wolves) and a fight between Michigan LW Vladimir Beruschko and Dakota RW Elliott Pepper. Bellmore said that he does not like fighting, but understands that it’s a part of the game’s culture. Then he proposed his novel alternative.
“What if, instead of punching each other, guys got into pillow fights?” said Bellmore. “We could keep pillows over by the benches, and when two guys decided to go at it, we could just toss ‘em a pillow. It would let guys get the aggression out, nobody gets hurt, and the fans would love it.”
The idea was met with skepticism by Bellmore’s teammates. D Doron Lidjya said that “some teams would probably fill the pillows with rocks or something.” Rapids coach Harold Engellund, informed of Bellmore’s idea, paused for a while and shook his head before saying, “Well, that’s… something.” Engellund, a scrappy defenseman who earned the nickname “Harry the Hit Man” during his playing days, is reportedly concerned that his team lets itself get pushed around by tougher squads like Michigan.
Translation: don’t expect to see pillows on the Dakota bench any time soon.