It’s likely to be a coincidence,but the same year that Patrick Roy is rejoining the NHL as a coach for the Colorado Avalanche is the same year that new tools against goons is being unleashed by the owners.
All fighting in hockey is again under scrutiny. It may not be his fault this time, but it might be time to remember why Patrick Roy is known for passion, good and bad.
To be sure, there are some who are still grumbling about his sons’ violent outbursts in youth/major junior hockey and his coaching maneuvers during a game where he was caught on tape ordering his own son to skate down to fight the other goalie, who wanted no part in fisticuffs.
Patrick Roy tried for days to defend himself. He spoke mostly in French in and was capable in avoiding some American media. The league suspended him and his son. They fined him.
Canadian media stayed with this story long enough for almost too long and the impact was lost until his other son, a 15-year-old winger, was caught on tape cross checking an opposing player in the face after the whistle for an offside call. There may have been provocation, but it can’t be seen on tape. Since Patrick was arguably one of the most influential players ever, it was important to the NHL that a message was sent.
Except the message got very mixed up. People in the NHL were called “pansies” by former players and broadcasters. Turmoil ensued, but went away again, and the younger Roys haven’t made headlines since.
Now, as the new rules come into play about visors and fighting, Patrick Roy’s name is likely to come up in the fighting/instigation debate again.
Why? Well, because he used to plan his fights too.