A little over a month ago, we heard word that the NHL was considering creating a “Diver’s List.” As in, putting together an official roster of guys with a history of diving with the intent of somehow shaming them publicly, and hoping they’ll do it less.

Darren Dreger wrote about the concept yesterday for TSN.ca:

Players, coaches, managers and officials who participated in league meetings in August agreed embellishment has once again become an issue.

Vancouver Canucks centre Ryan Kesler has been identified as an offender. While Kesler plays the game hard, he has been known to exaggerate contact to gain an advantage.

He goes on to highlight Evgeni Malkin and Dan Carcillo as another two names that would likely be on the list, before getting to what the punishment would be:

Everything from posting pictures of each culprit in every NHL dressing room to re-instituting a fine system, or simply tacking on an additional two-minute penalty to offset the original call is being discussed by hockey operations and will at some point be presented to all NHL general managers for further discussion.

I’m okay with fines for repeat offenders. I don’t know if that’ll even do much to deter anybody, but at least it’ll be a minor inconvenience for them, like playing against a diver. (By the way, if they want fines to really matter, they should make guys pay in some horribly annoying manner – make them bring the fine to the NHL head offices in nickels in under three days or something. …I really should be commissioner, I know.)

But that anyone thinks putting up pictures in every dressing room is a good idea is hilarious. What’s that supposed to accomplish? Get opponents to chirp them about embellishing so they’ll stop? Do they think guys who dive don’t already get chirped? Pests pride themselves on their pest-iness.

That would be vastly underestimating how confident NHLers are. I am NOT a diver! To prove it, I’m gonna try extra hard to stay on my feet! That, and if I may say, it’s just weird. Put the pictures up in the refs dressing room if you insist on doing it.

But then there’s the other big question: why is embellishing the World’s Worst Thing? I know it’s dishonest, chicken-shit, and I’d like to see it disappear as much as anyone, but it certainly isn’t a morally different form of cheating than intentionally doing something else illegal mid-game and hoping to get away with it. (As my post earlier today highlighted, we all do that stuff from time to time.)

I liked Harrison Mooney’s take on it earlier today:


 Check Harrison’s @ replies to see a deeper look at his take on it.

If we’re going to punish divers specifically (as opposed to say, the guys who repeatedly take slashing penalties), a “public shaming” isn’t the way to go. Take a little green out of their wallets, because it’s only a matter of time until everyone is flat used to the pictures in the room, the list, and all the rest.