USD Professor: Fighting in Hockey is Calculated, Not Impulsive

University of San Diego Professor Nadav Goldschmied has conducted a study, which appears in this month’s "Sports Health: A Multidisciplinary Approach," which finds fighting in professional hockey to be a calculated, not impulsive, action taken by players when the stakes are low.

Goldschmied found that during the 2010-2011 National Hockey League (NHL) season, players were significantly less likely to be involved in a fight as the game was coming to a close than in its early stages. In addition, data from the past 10 NHL seasons showed that players were significantly more violent in preseason games than during the regular season. They were also least likely to be involved in a fight during the postseason.

The converging evidence suggests that players take into account the penalties associated with fighting and are less likely to engage in violence when the stakes are high, such as at the end of a game or a season. This implies, in turn, that major acts of aggression in the league are more likely to be calculated rather than impulsive. The findings suggest that a more punitive system should diminish fighting behavior markedly.

The study can be found at (third article from the top).

Dr. Goldschmied is available for interviews by calling (619) 260-4659 x4 or by cell phone at (813) 598-1351.

About the University of San Diego

The University of San Diego sets the standard for an engaged, contemporary Catholic university where innovative Changemakers confront humanity’s urgent challenges. With more than 8,000 students from 75 countries and 44 states, USD is the youngest independent institution on the U.S. News & World Report list of top 100 universities in the United States. USD’s eight academic divisions include the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Business, the Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering, the School of Law, the School of Leadership and Education Sciences, the Hahn School of Nursing and Health Science, the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, and the Division of Professional and Continuing Education. USD recently concluded our successful $317M Leading Change: The Campaign for USD, which represented the most ambitious fundraising effort in the history of the university. In September 2016, USD introduced Envisioning 2024, a strategic plan that capitalizes on the university’s recent progress and aligns new strategic goals with current strengths to help shape a vision for the future as the university looks ahead to its 75th anniversary in the year 2024.