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Monday, February 27, 2012


Another game and another debate about a open ice hit that resulted in a checking to the head penalty.  During our first intermission discussion, colour man Ed Burkholder and I tried to break down the Brock Beukeboom hit and come to some sort of consensus about body contact.  I don't think either one of us were able to do that.  Here is what we can ascertain about the hit that Beukeboom delivered on young Jack Nevins of Kingston. If you go down to the highlights at the bottom of this post, you can check out the hit at around the 2:40 mark of the video.

  • The puck was in play as the lead pass from the defense was intended for Nevins
  • Beukeboom may not have caught Nevins head on ,but I would not call this a definitive "blind side hit"
  • The contact was almost certainly shoulder to shoulder- no contact to the head at all
  • Nevins got injured when he fell back and his head inadvertently hit the knee of the trailing Ice Dog, who I think was Brett Ritchie.  
The final point was the one that got lost in this.  It took me going home to re-watch the hit a good 3 times before I picked it up.  My guess is that this is what caused the injury to Nevins.   Beukeboom was assessed a five minute major for checking to the head and a game misconduct.  He also picked up a five minute major after a fight with Conor Stokes in the immediate aftermath of the hit.   

When the OHL looks at supplemental discipline, they usually follow a general list of criteria, not limited to the following: 

  • Player vulnerability
  • Whether or not there was contact to the head
  • Penalty called on the play
  • Injury to the player
Really, the only one that Beukeboom fits is the penalty part and the referees got that one wrong.  The puck was definitely in play, so the player should not be considered vulnerable, there was no contact to the head and the injury was not caused by the Beukeboom contact, rather the trail player.   

There is no way that there should be any supplementary discipline coming Brock Beukeboom's way. 
The referee's got the Brock Beukeboom call wrong on Sunday, and they can be forgiven because they had to make a snap decision. The OHL, with the benefit of video replay should take a pass on this.

 It would be a shame, almost a travesty if there was anything more attached to Beukeboom.

Steve Clark

PS..Almost forgot about the game itself.  The Ice Dogs jumped out to a 6-1 lead before the period was half over and coasted to a 9-3 victory over Kingston.  They retook the conference lead as Ottawa was bested by London.   Alex Friesen, Dougie Hamilton, and Joel Wigle paced the Ice Dogs with 2 each while Ryan Strome, Freddie Hamilton and Brett Ritchie added singles.  Chris Festarini broke off a personal three game losing streak with the win.

Here are the highlights:  Niagara 9 Kingston 3

1 comment:

  1. You're was Ritchie who was the trailing player. Don't really know if it was hitting him on the way down or the actual hit that caused the injury.
    This was a shoulder to shoulder hit on a player that just received a pass and he didn't see it coming. Hockey is a tough, physical game and injuries happen. If Branch feels compelled to hand out a suspension for this then we might as well assume that open-ice hitting is now banned in this league.