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Head Shot – Charges Laid

We all know and understand that any and all sports ca be aggressive given the fact that games can “test’ all players regardless of the sport.

Reflecting back, many will remember the incident with Sudbury’s Todd Bertuzzi and Steve Moore March 8th, 2004 which changed the way ‘payback” is dished out from one player to another.

Fast forward to a tournament that was played December 10th in Grimsby Ontario at the Fleming Memorial Arena that saw a 17 year-old goalie intentionally struck an opposing player in the head with their stick.

He is now facing a charge of assault with a weapon and according to Niagara police, the goaltender allegedly hit an opponent in the head with his stick during a youth hockey tournament.

To the surprise of no one the tournament has not been named and given that this took place during the on-going Pandemic this event alone has many wondering why “tournaments” were allowed to be played?

In BC, all tournaments were stopped by Dr. Bonnie Henry; BC’s Provincial Health Officer due to the escalation of Covid and while everyone has a different perspective they were shut down.

It is obvious that Ontario has a different manner in which to deal with the Pandemic, while everyone else in Canada continues to question ‘is it real or not.”

So in light of everything the situation that transpired in Grimsby while it should not have happened – it did!

Const. Phil Gavin told CBC there was a “back and forth” between the goalie and a player with the other team before the stick swing took place.

“But in this particular case it was believed that threshold was overstepped and it met the grounds for a criminal charge.”

The player who was hit was taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries and has since been released. 

It’s reported that his helmet did protect him from a further serious injury, but regardless the goaltender was ejected from the game and also banned from the remainder of the tournament.

Reportedly Const. Phil Gavin stated “In the end it is a game and you should be able to walk away without lasting injuries.”

The 17-year-old goaltender cannot be named due to Canada’s Youth Criminal Justice Act.

If you were thinking if this is the first time it has happened, it’s not!

Previously dating back to March 2017 Todd Ball, 38, of Fort Erie, was sentenced by Judge Tory Colvin Wednesday to serve 30 days on weekends and one-year of probation for assault causing bodily harm.

“I feel they should have made an example out of him,” victim Ryan Cox, 27, of Fort Erie said outside the courtroom. “I just don’t want this to happen to anybody else.

“He only got 30 days for breaking someone’s face. My life has never been the same.

The problem is differentiating between the physical nature of hockey — and criminal conduct that occurs outside the context of the game.

What upsets me is there was no reason behind it. There was no confrontation between us

“In my mind, the significant fact is that this was a non-contact, fun tournament,” Colvin said. “It makes it very different from cases involving competitive play, for instance in the NHL or the AHL.

The 17-year-old has been released pending a future court date.

So doing a follow-up the following are comments that were made on social media, which I reserve comments.

  • Players swing sticks all the time. especially at other players. next they criminalize checking into the boards because some pansy gets hurt. get thicker skin or get out of the game. go play house league somewhere.
  • it’s hockey. Yes they get hit. yes sticks fly, criminal, no way. did they hand out participation trophies too.
  • Well the victim’s Mom has to be justified.

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About Steve Erickson

 

 

Sportswave Productions is located in Delta, BC.
Sportswave promotes/broadcasts Amateur Sports within the Lower Mainland to promote your sport.
 
He was also recognized by Ravi Kahlon, BC’s MLA Minister for Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation in September 11, 2017.
 
SportsWave offers services that extend from sports articles, to interviews with on location webcasts on www.sportswave.ca
 
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