Western Lacrosse Association Commissioner Casey Cook says that his league will probably choose to abide by the new fighting rules announced this week by the Canadian Lacrosse Association. “I would expect that the WLA is going to move into conformity with that particular rule,” he told IL Indoor. Cook says that it would be difficult to operate their league otherwise. “There would be difficult for refs calling games outside of CLA rules. Also, we would have difficulty acquiring insurance for a game that was outside the rules of the CLA. Our own insurer tells us often that becomes the standard for them in terms of how they measure their insurance and their insurance rates. So I would suggest that insurance for our league would become very difficult for us to operate outside the bounds of the CLA rule.”
Original reports that the WLA may ignore the rule and follow its own path arose because “the rule that came down from the CLA was markedly different than what we expected and had been led to believe it would be. We thought the rule was going to be simply you fight and you’re gone,” Cook explained. When the league found out that players who fight unwillingly to protect themselves will not be ejected, Cook says that changed the WLA’s position.
The league’s board will have a meeting tomorrow night to consider the rule and craft exactly what the WLA will do, but Cook was pleased with the rule that was announced. “A star player needs some protection,” he said. “You simply can’t have the knuckle-draggers taking out your star players.”
Cook pointed out that with growing knowledge of concussions and their impact on the lives of people who sustain them, that administrators have an ethical responsibility to do what they can to make the game safer to play. And to those who suggest that fighting is a part of the sport and should remain as such, Cook says, “It’s not a case of if fighting is going to be taken out of the game, it’s a question of when fighting is going to be taken out of the game.Stamp is a TV sports announcer and lacrosse lover whose skill set made him a defender but who always dreamed of being a goal-scorer. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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