Nasty pro hockey fight sequence includes helmet toss
Edinburgh Capitals defenceman Joe Grimaldi (in white) gets set to throw his helmet at Nottingham Panthers forward Max Parent during EIHL play earlier this month. (Screen grab)
Former OHLer Joe Grimaldi was slapped with one of the most severe suspensions ever handed out by the British Elite Ice Hockey League on Friday.
Grimaldi, a 28-year-old defenceman with the Edinburgh Capitals who played with the Ottawa 67’s for two seasons (2005-07), was suspended 18 games for his actions during a game against the Nottingham Panthers on Jan. 3. The ban pales in comparison to the 47-game suspension Hull Stingrays forward Derek Campbell was handed last season but it’s a significant punishment, nonetheless.
Even though he received 69 penalty minutes for a nasty piece of work against Nottingham, it might not amount to a hill of beans.
A day after the incident, which saw Grimaldi commit a multitude of sins – he hit Panthers defenceman Evan Mosey with a shoulder to the head, speared forward Max Parent in the chest, threw his helmet at Parent and, finally, sucker-punched him a second after the helmet made contact – the Capitals announced he had been released for what co-owner Scott Neil told the Edinburgh News was “wholly unacceptable” behaviour.
The EIHL’s Department of Player Safety went even further in its video explaining the suspension.
“Grimaldi’s actions are not, in any way, a hockey play and bring the game into disrepute,” the league spokesman said. “Grimaldi intentionally spears Parent in the stomach area with intent and motions to spear him again. Grimaldi removes his helmet and throws it violently at Parent, which makes contact in the head area. Grimaldi violently punches Parent while he’s unaware or unable to protect himself.
“These are all reckless actions with no regard for the opposing player’s safety.”
Grimaldi, a native of Ronkonkoma, N.Y., has bounced around the minor leagues since graduating from the OHL in 2007. He signed with Edinburgh last summer. In 17 games with the Capitals, he had three goals, six assists and a team-high 165 penalty minutes.