Minor hockey coach suspended over tripping video
CTV British Columbia
Published Wednesday, June 27, 2012 6:06PM PDT
Last Updated Wednesday, June 27, 2012 6:59PM PDT
The Vancouver Minor Hockey Association says it has suspended a coach caught on video tripping an opposing player during a post-game handshake.
Video obtained by CTV News shows UBC Hornets coach Martin Tremblay causing two boys to tumble to the ice at Thunderbird Arena last weekend following the tense gold medal game against the Richmond Steel. One boy suffered a broken wrist in the fall and police are considering criminal charges.
Tremblay will not be sanctioned by the informal spring league the boys were playing in, but the local hockey association won’t have anything to do with him.
“I know our president for the Vancouver Minor Hockey Association has suspended him and they’re going to have an emergency meeting over it. I don’t think he’ll be coaching for us in the near future,” VMHA coach coordinator Dion Demarco told CTV News.
He said Tremblay’s actions during the handshake were out of character. “The guy kind of snapped and that’s totally unacceptable.”
Elizabeth Alexantonakis, whose son Michael was knocked to the ice by Tremblay, described the trip as “a bad example of human behaviour” and said she would support criminal charges.
“He should be banned. He should be fined as well. He shouldn’t be coaching any kids’ sports. He picked the wrong career,” she said.
Michael wasn’t hurt in the fall.
Tremblay couldn’t be reached for comment Wednesday, but witnesses say the coach claimed he had slipped on the ice.
According to Vancouver criminal lawyer Michael Shapray, if Tremblay is charged his case won’t be impacted by some of the issues seen in other sports-related trials, where players’ consent to some level of physical contact can play a role.
“This incident didn’t happen during the game. This incident happened after the game,” Shapray said.
“Certainly no player consents to have any physical content with a coach in the handshake portion of the game.”
Mounties have said investigators are considering a charge of assault causing bodily harm or assault, depending on the severity of the young players’ injuries.
With a report from CTV British Columbia’s Jon Woodward