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Ice Chips

  • Ex-Komet becomes a coach
    Former Komets player Kevin Kaminski has been hired to coach the Portland Junior Pirates.
  • Mesiner signs with CHL team
    Goaltender Ben Meisner, who played last season for the Komets, has signed to play with Allen of the CHL this season.
  • Federals to play at Coliseum
    The Fort Wayne Federals, a junior team in the Minnesota Junior Hockey League, will play two games at Memorial Coliseum this season. They will take on the Illiana Blackbirds on Jan.
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Appalling

The CHL has suspended Rio Grande Valley's Aaron Boogard six games for punching Robert Keith: Click here.

That's right -- six games.

Appalling.

Here's what happened: Click here and here.

I don't care if Keith is a blogger, reporter, fan, whatever you want to consider him, this type of stuff cannot be tolerated. I don't care if Keith was mouthing off or not. Players have to be smarter than this. When you consider the various setups of arenas around the league, as well as the different ideas of professionalism in various cities, this easily could have been a nearby fan, off-ice official, statistician, trainer, mascot or peanut vendor.

What kind of precedent does this send? Don't worry about clocking someone; it'll cost you two weeks of game time.

So a coach disrobing is worse? Brad MacMillan going after a player in a preseason game is more than three times worse?

Leagues like the CHL make a big deal about being "family friendly." If that's the case, then when unfortunate incidents like this come up, you scream to the rafters: "This will not be tolerated." You do that by coming down hard with a suspension. You send out a huge press release and explain that your players will be held accountable for actions on and off the ice. You don't give out six games, which, by the way, is only two more than Nick Boucher of the Komets got for coming the length of the ice to get at a defenseless Brian Mahoney-Wilson on Friday.

So, basically, on the same day that Boucher's suspension was handed out -- a suspension most people believe was just -- the CHL said that hitting a guy not actually employed by the league is only marginally worse than hitting a guy that signed on to get hit.

Again, I know the guy was mouthing off. And I know the Killer Bees allegedly informed the on-ice officials that there was situation brewing, and they didn't do anything. But what if Keith got injured? What if he's in the hospital? Yeah, I know, there are a lot of what ifs, but that's the point. You crack down on these things so people don't think about doing them again.

Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at jcohn@jg.net.

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