The Director of Player Safety of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League,
Raymond Bolduc, today suspended Derek Sheppard of the Gatineau
Olympiques for 6 games (2 automatic and 4 imposed by the League). The
suspension was handed out following an incident that occurred on January
31 against the Drummondville Voltigeurs.
Here is the rationale that led to the decision:
Two players were battling for the puck in the neutral zone.
The opponent retrieved it and headed towards the middle of the rink.
The player at fault followed him in a checking position with only one hand on his stick.
His opponent saw him coming and slightly changed his path.
The player at fault then extended his arm to hit and reached his opponent head with his elbow.
The gesture was cheap and unacceptable.
Earlier in the game, the player at fault had tried to hit another vulnerable opponent with his elbow.
His opponent was not injured on the play.
Director of Player Safety took this decision after having viewed videos
of the incident, considered the officials report, spoken to the players
and organizations involved and after consulting the Advisory Committee
for disciplinary action.
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)