Boucherville, Friday April 15th, 2016 – The Director of Player Safety of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Raymond Bolduc, suspended Bokondji Imama of the Saint John Sea Dogs for 7 games. The suspension was handed out following an incident that occurred on April 12th against the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles.
Here is the rationale that led to the decision:
- The opponent recovered the puck in the left corner of the ice and went around his net to exit his zone.
- The player at fault started from the left side of the ice and headed towards the puck carrier on the other side.
- He finished his hit on the opponent at the height of the face-off dot on the red line of the circle.
- The player fault traveled a great distance to get to his opponent.
- He accelerated and took several strides without gliding before his hit; he had a lot of speed at impact.
- After completing a pass to a teammate, the opponent was in a vulnerable position at impact.
- Seeing that the opponent was slightly ahead, the player fault stretched forward and hit him with force.
- At the moment of impact, he was propelled shoulder and head first into the boards.
- Several factors were considered in the decision-making
- Distance traveled (charging)
- Speed at impact
- Distance between the boards and the player at contact (boarding)
- The force used on the opponent
- The player at fault has the responsibility, when a player is in a vulnerable position, to either try to avoid or minimize contact, which was not the case.
- This is not the first offense of the player at fault.
- The opponent was severely injured on the play.
The 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.
The suspension is retroactive as of April 13th, 2016.