BOCA RATON, Fla. -- New Jersey Devils
General Manager Lou Lamoriello believes the recommendation made by the League's executives at the GM meetings this week on blind-side hits to the head ultimately will change the way players think the game.
However, he doesn't feel third-line grinder-types need to change the way they play the game, either.
"I don't think you have to look at it that way," Lamoriello said. "That player has a choice to make on how he hits. He could still do his job -- he could still eliminate the opponent. But he has to make sure that whatever is in his mind, he has a little bit of a thought process as to how far he goes."
Lamoriello was part of the eight-man group that studied video and research on concussions over a four-month period before reporting the findings back to the 22 other GMs on the final day of meetings Wednesday.
"I don't think it should be a culture change," Lamoriello said. "I think some of our new rules allowed some of this to happen. The game has changed to some degree, all in a positive way. But certainly, when change takes place, some other things come about and what you have to do is adjust to it accordingly but never lose sight of what the game is and what it's all about. We also have to be very careful, too. We have a limited number of injuries, but they are injuries we want to prevent. There are many hits where injuries are not caused and we don't talk about, so what was done (Wednesday) takes all of that into consideration.
"The rule doesn't change the fabric of our game; it addresses where are concerns are."