Coach’s Corner: Time to enforce neck guards

Don Cherry and Ron MacLean talk about having respect for players like Jaromir Jagr, and player safety in the wake of Claude Giroux sustaining a serious skate cut to the back of his leg.

Don Cherry is once again taking on the role of player safety advocate.

Appearing on Coach’s Corner with Ron MacLean, Cherry was adamant that all NHL players should be wearing neck guards in order to prevent injuries to the neck area.

“You should have a throat guard all the time,” Cherry said Saturday. “(If) the NHL is so interested in safety, it’s so easy. If you had (a neck guard) on, you wouldn’t have to worry about this at all.”

Cherry specifically mentioned plays where Michael Del Zotto of the Philadelphia Flyers and Tampa Bay Lightning defenceman Radko Gudas were hit in the neck by an opposing players’ skate. He said those incidents would have never happened if they were wearing proper protection.

“This is ridiculous. How many times does this have to happen?” said Cherry.