Neate Sager

  • Victoria Royals' Ryan Gagnon, Kamloops Blazers' Patrik Maier suspended by WHL for illegal checks (VIDEO)

    Neate Sager at Buzzing The Net19 hrs ago

    The Kamloops Blazers and Victoria Royals met on each of the first two weekends in the WHL. Suffice to say, the early-season animosity between the B.C. Division clubs might have factored into two questionable hits that have resulted in suspensions to the Royals' Ryan Gagnon and Blazers' Patrik Maier.

    On Friday night, Gagnon received a charging major/game misconduct after drilling Blazers wing Josh Connolly in the corner, which touched off a scuffle. It looks like Connolly twisted slightly a split-second before contact so that his back was presented to the oncoming Gagnon, which might explain why it was called charging rather than a check from behind. Still, that's an awfully unsafe play.

    Midway through the third, of a 7-2 game, Maier blindsided Victoria's Axel Blomqvist following an offside call.

    Blomqvist, a 6-foot-5 forward who is a signed Winnipeg Jets prospect, missed Victoria's game the following night. The play was certainly avoidable.

    Each offender has been put under indefinite suspension. (Portland's Paul Bittner also had a TBD for a checking-from-behind major/game misconduct he received last Saturday.)

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