Somebody Needs to Say It: the NHL Is More Physical Than the NFL

By NFLSportChannel
for NFLSportChannel.com

Published: March 30, 2009

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... of America take it seriously, but for the most part Americans either don't watch hockey at all or only watch it between the NFL and MLB seasons.

However, I think something needs to be said for the NHL that nobody wants to admit.

Fans of football often praise the physical play in the NFL. Teams brag about having hard-hitting defenses and playing smash mouth football. However, the league has been getting progressively less physical year after year.

In hockey, that is not the case. If a hockey player gets praised for being a hard hitter, it's because he's a hard hitter, not because the new rules make him look great when compared to his peers.

Let's take a look at the track record of the two leagues:

Before the 1970s, the NFL allowed full contact coverage of wide receivers. Anything short of tackling the receiver before the ball touched him was not considered pass interference. Hall of Fame Pittsburgh Steelers safety Mel Blount to...

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