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Truculence training: Flames practice ... fighting

Calgary Flames v New York Rangers

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 15: Brian McGrattan #16 of the Calgary Flames throws a punch at Dylan McIlrath #42 of the New York Rangers during their second period fight at Madison Square Garden on December 15, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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From the “funnier in our imaginations than in reality department” comes this story from TSN: the Calgary Flames are devoting some chunks of practice time to proper fighting techniques.

While the report describes it as a “rare sight,” it sounds mundane enough ... really just a crash course for non-fighters in not getting completely pummeled.

“As we did in the past years, we’re just trying to teach the kids to defend themselves,” Head coach Bob Hartley told TSN. “That’s what we’re trying to teach our young players.”

Looking at this fairly is a lot less fun than letting our snark/imaginations run wild, though.

Such a story just begs people to tweet, “Shouldn’t the Flames spend time learning how to play hockey instead?”

Pugilism enthusiast Brian Burke is an executive in the Flames organization, which only adds fuel to the mockery fire (see: this post’s zany headline).

This AP photo of Brian McGrattan at training camp provides an ideal “artist’s rendering” of what fighting training looks like in some of our heads:

Brian McGrattan

Calgary Flames’ Brian McGrattan rides a stationary bike during testing on the opening day of NHL training camp in Calgary, Alberta, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jeff McIntosh)


It’s mostly not that big of a thing, although for the people who are still wondering how an NHL team can justify paying limited fighter Deryk Engelland nearly $3 million per season, it’s not exactly the most encouraging nugget, either.

Still, at least we can all be amused by that McGrattan photo ...

Follow James O’Brien @cyclelikesedins