Life has thrown everything at me in the last few days, and I've been extremely busy because of it. It will continue into the weekend as well, and I'll find myself at a good friend's wedding tomorrow. However, it should be a good time, and I'm looking forward to being a part of Jeff's and Melissa's big day. However, before I get into my suit and tie for the event, I was looking at some of the names signed to teams today, and it seems that there are fewer and fewer true enforcers left in the game. Yes, you still have your Godards, Boogaards, Laraques, Hordichuks, and Parkers, but they are expected to do more than just chuck knuckles. In honour of these guys, I present to you some of the greatest NHL enforcers in this writer's humble opinion.
Let's start with the man who redefined the term "enforcer". Bob Probert was one of the toughest, meanest guys ever to don a hockey jersey, and you simply did not take liberties with guys like Yzerman when Probert was in the lineup.
Bob Probert vs. Greg Smyth
Another guy who looked like he might be Probert's main contender to the title of "Heavyweight Champion of the NHL" was Link Gaetz. Gaetz was a fierce competitor, and threw punches like they were going out of style. Unfortunately, he was forced to retire after a boating accident.
Link Gaetz vs. Bob Probert
The other half of the "Bruise Brothers" in Detroit was Joey Kocur. Kocur was one of the most feared enforcers of all-time due to his fighting style. He put his entire body behind every punch.
Joey Kocur vs. Sean Brown
Who is the most dangerous lefty in the NHL? Georges Laraque. And Laraque knows how to rain blows down upon people.
Georges Laraque vs. Riley Cote
Those are some of my favorite enforcers of all-time. Of course, there are a pile more. Dave Semenko, Ryan Vandenbussche, Tim Hunter, Tie Domi, Dan Kordic, and Stu Grimson would also be included in this list if I were doing a Top-10 list, but I'm not. Is there anyone I've forgotten or overlooked? Let me know in the comment section!
I'm off to get some sleep before the wedding bells ring for Jeff and Melissa! Congratulations, and I'll see you two tomorrow! As for everyone else, stay safe and take care!
Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!