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The “code” doesn’t exist according to Philippe Boucher and Jean-Charles Lajoie
Credit: Capture d'écran / Screenshot
The code. The famous code. The precious code.

I knew there was a code in the NHL, but working alongside Georges Laraque for a year helped me understand all the little details of that code.

The idea behind the code is simple: if you injure an opposing player by hitting him in an unclean manner, you’re going to have to throw away the gloves on the spot or at the next game between the two teams. It goes like this. You have to answer for your actions when you play professional North American hockey. #UncleBarButGood

Remember Paul Byron, who had to fight MacKenzie Weegar – much bigger and fatter than him – because he had injured him in the previous game between the two teams. Byron suffered a concussion that probably hastened the end of his career by throwing down with Weegar.

But hey, that’s the code. You can’t escape it.

Brendan Gallagher, meanwhile, had to throw down the gloves last week, following his elbow to Adam Pelech earlier this season. Pelech suffered a concussion and Gallagher was suspended for five games.

Why did Gallagher fight Jean-Gabriel Pageau and not Adam Pelech himself? Because Pelech has only fought twice in the last 11 years – he’s not a brawler – and he’s coming back from a head injury. In the meantime, one of the player’s teammates decides to vouch for him.

Even before the game started, Gallagher knew he was in for a fight. He made no secret of it. And he probably already knew that it would be against a guy of his size in Pageau, not Pelech…

The code doesn’t exist?
Why am I telling you about the code this morning? Becausea TVA Sports article from a few days ago made its way into my Facebook timeline today. A text written by Jean-Charles Lajoie, in which he mentions that the code doesn’t exist.

“How can you explain something that doesn’t exist? Fortunately, in the midst of all this useless noise, there are some brilliant, level-headed and lucid guys, guys who also have the good fortune to have played over 700 games in the NHL. Guys like Philippe Boucher, who, exasperated by the verbal diarrhea of some […] In the name of what? In the name of the code, the famous code that is preached and even abused everywhere, often stupidly and without further explanation.”Jean-Charles Lajoie

Jean-Charles based his comments on the words of Philippe Boucher, a former NHL player who also coached and was GM in junior hockey once his career was over. Boucher had previously said on TVA Sports (JC):

“What’s the code? Nobody knows, because the code doesn’t exist!

Moments later, Boucher went so far as to say that the code was just common sense.

“What does exist is common sense. You mess with one of my teammates, you get a visitor. But the code? It’s mush!”

Jean-Charles also spoke of common sense at the end of his text.

Before, I might have hesitated and thought that Phillipe and JC might have been right, that the code doesn’t exist…

But since I’ve had the chance to discuss the code dozens of times with my boyfriend Georges – on air and in private – I can’t say that the code doesn’t exist. It exists.

It’s also this famous code that prevented Georges from beating Milan Lucic back in the day. Georges had the taste… but he couldn’t jump on an opponent who was standing still. It just wasn’t done.

Second, to say that the code doesn’t exist is one thing, but to say that the code is really just common sense is quite another.

The Law of Talion (an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth) is not the most logical thing in 2024. Those who defend this principle are clearly not being called rational, Cartesian people whose first quality is common sense.

I’m probably the guy who bases his actions most on common sense that you know… and no, I don’t think it’s logical to hit someone who hit me eight months earlier…

Advocating outright revenge is not “common sense”…


I just thought that saying the code doesn’t exist and that it’s just logic applied on the ice was special. Especially when a former league tough guy has been arguing for years that it does exist…

But hey, out of curiosity, I’ll ask you:

In your opinion, does the code exist in the NHL?

In gusto

– Montreal CF injury update:

– The Montreal team believes in its depth to replace its absent forwards. I think Mason Toye will get a start tomorrow night at Stade Saputo.

– Laurent Courtois had some kind words for Raheem Edwards this morning in a press briefing. And he put a little pressure on him in the process…

– To be continued.

– Kris Letang is in bad shape.

– The players are enjoying the end of the season.

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