Embarrassment for Elite League discipline officials over Sheffield Steelers v Belfast Giants incident

Colton Fretter
Colton Fretter

The Elite League has taken the unprecedented step of having an outside expert review a decision their disciplinary panel appears to have bungled.

The EIHL wants another party to look into the Colton Fretter v Spiro Goulakos bust up which could have led to serious injury.

A furious Fretter charged into Goulakos' back after being hit from behind by the player.

The Department of Player Safety banned Fretter for a single game but hammered Goulakos with three.

That decision was derided first around the British ice hockey scene and then across the world.

Last night the League issued a statement saying an outside assessor will review the situation.

"The people involved with the EIHL DOPS will not be involved in this review process. The EIHL have asked for assistance from an outside body that currently look after player safety for another top level professional league," said the statement.

The League is frantically trying to rebuild confidence in its ability to keep players safe.

It seems inevitable that Fretter, who misses tonight's match at Braehead Clan, will be clobbered by a bigger suspension.

The incident was clearly out of character for the Canadian right winger - and he has been the victim of several hits from the back this season - but whether that 'mitigation' will help remains to be seen.

Spiro Goulakos

Spiro Goulakos

While he is out suspended, Steelers cannot play a 'spare' import in his place.

Tonight, on top of Fretter's absence, Steelers will have two 'healthy scratches.'

One is likely to be Mathieu Roy, who the club are trying to re-build in terms of fitness.

He has been rested twice and been injured on a further two occasions in the last seven games.