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Tristan Frei suspended for one game

Department of Player Safety Decision

On Sunday night in Guildford, Flames forward Tristan Frei was penalised for a forceful hit on Storm Jared Vanwormer that caused him to be thrown dangerously into the boards.

As the video shows, Storm Forward Scott Simmonds plays the puck towards the end boards in his attacking zone, and Vanwormer is skating towards the loose puck with Flames players defending including Frei. Vanwormer wins the race to the puck and has his body facing the boards with numbers clearly showing while he plays the puck behind the net to his teammate.

Frei approaches with speed, and despite seeing nothing but Vanwormer’s numbers for some time hits through Vanwormer back with force driving him dangerously into the boards.

This is Boarding. It is important to note that while Vanwormer does turn towards the boards to play the puck, this is not a case of a player turning immediately prior to contact in a way that turns a legal hit into an illegal one. From the moment Frei hits the goal line he sees nothing but Vanwormer’s numbers.

With time to make a better decision, the onus is on Frei to deliver this hit in a legal fashion, avoid it entirely, or, at the very least, minimise its force. Instead, he drives directly through Vanwormer’s back with speed, driving him forcefully into the boards with his head contacting the glass causing a facial injury.

To summarise:

  • This is Boarding
  • Frei has neither been fined or suspended previously
  • Vanwormer receives a facial injury as the result of the illegal hit

Effective immediately, Guildford Flames #13 Tristan Frei is suspended for 1 game and fined.

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