I didn’t like Stephen Peat when he played for the Caps.
No, that’s not fair. I didn’t like the team for playing him, putting him out there. I didn’t like the league for making a business out of people putting their bodies in harm’s way.
But I didn’t dislike Peat himself. I understood why Peat might want to throw himself in front of punches to make a living. And I figured, as long as he’s going to do that to himself, he might as well make an NHL salary. Seems wasteful to ruin a man for the salary they pay in the AHL.
I didn’t like the world for being the way it was. And Peat was a constant reminder of the way the world was. It was just a little to obvious, the invisible damage that was being done to them all. Damage caused by fans like me for choosing to watch it, as much as by their opponents. Damage that was being done to guys like Dwayne Zinger, and Kevin Kaminsky, and Aaron Volpatti, and Darcy Verot.
And Michael Latta. Yeah, this isn't a problem from the past.
It was exciting, for sure. You never knew what would happen when Peat went up against Chris Neil, or PJ Stock, or Jody Shelley, or Donald Brashear. Or Wade Belak.