About two weeks ago, Milan Lucic got 10+4 for crosschecking a player and then tackling them on the ice. He deserved all of it, but it happened because the same official that penalized him watched Lucic get blatantly boarded right in front of him and did nothing. If you're saying you're protecting the players, protect the players. Rules are meaningless if they aren't enforced.
Player safety needs to be the utmost concern of any professional sports league, and the National Hockey League is no different. The National Football League and its rash of player suicides shows that we need to be vigilant about individuals risking their lives both on and off the field of play.
Hockey is a dangerous sport. Players are moving at very fast speeds while on ice. It is also a very violent game and fighting is actually encouraged. The NHL needs to take steps in order to ensure that their players are safe. NHL athletes are tough but you can never be too safe.
Players in the National Hockey League make the choice to continue in their highly violent and dangerous position by choice not force. I think we spend too much time and effort helping those who know what they are doing to themselves, and not enough time helping those who are in need.