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Junior B Hockey Brawl Ends With 43 Games Worth Of Suspensions

CBC -- A major B.C. regional junior hockey league has issued a slew of suspensions following a brawl between players on New Year's Eve.

In its statement Tuesday, the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League (KIJHL) said it had handed out a total of 35 games in suspensions to players from the Nelson Leafs and eight games to Beaver Valley Nitehawks players due to an on-ice brawl involving the two teams. 

...The league says the players are eligible to return later this month, but it decided to suspend Leafs head coach Adam DiBella indefinitely, pending the completion of its investigation into his actions during the game in question.

Don't get me wrong, that was a great scrap. No doubt about it. Anytime everybody partners up and we get a full line brawl is a good night. 

But did anything from that fight right there scream "43 games worth of suspensions" to you? Because from the looks of it, nobody even dropped their gloves. This was more or less some glorified locker boxing. Gloves on. Helmets with cages. Every fight looked to be 1-on-1 instead of a few guys ganging up on one. 

What ever happened to letting the boys play? If anything you could hit all these guys with 2-minutes for roughing, maybe tack on a few unsportsmanlike penalties to whoever started the whole shebang. But 43 games worth of suspensions? Unless there's a conversion factor to the metric system I'm missing here, that seems like a drastic overreaction. And apparently a coach from one of the teams was forced to resign afterwards, too. 

I don't know. I guess I just expected a little more out of Canada than that. If guys were getting suspended for fighting with their gloves on in somewhere like Connecticut, I'd get it. Place is as soft as it gets. But a Junior B league in British Colombia? I genuinely thought you couldn't have a Junior B game in BC without at least 3 different line brawls. Hard to watch what this world is coming to.