Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Sheffield Steelers' Baldwin banned for stamp on Szwez

Sheffield Steelers defenceman Gord Baldwin has been hit with a five-match suspension after being cited by the Belfast Giants.

Giants management were furious when Baldwin appeared to kick out at Jeffrey Szwez during the second period of Saturday night's clash with the Steelers at the Odyssey Arena.

Video evidence showed the two players had got their legs tangled as Szwez poked the puck into the net for the second Giants goal in their 4-2 win, but as they got freed up Baldwin aimed the blade of his skate towards the Giants forward's ankle and stamped at him.

Amazingly the Steelers player was only punished for slashing at the time by referee Neil Wilson, with Szwez hit with a roughing penalty after he reacted to Baldwin by punching him in the face.

The video evidence was, however, forwarded to Elite League disciplinary chief Moray Hanson who imposed the suspension.

A statement released by the Elite League read: "Sheffield Steelers Defenceman Gord Baldwin have been banned for five matches for kicking following a supplementary discipline review.

"Belfast Giants requested the review following the incident in the second period (26:03) of the game between the two sides on Saturday 12th October, 2013.

"The incident was reviewed by head of discipline Moray Hanson and he has assessed a match penalty for kicking under the IIHF rule 535.

"This penalty carries an automatic five-match suspension, which cannot be appealed."

Not only is 6ft 5 Canadian Baldwin now ruled out of the return meeting of the teams in Sheffield this coming Sunday, he won't be eligible to play again until November.