MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A hockey referee accused of pushing and injuring a teenage player has been placed on leave.

The father of a 14-year-old player says his son ended up with a concussion after his head hit the ice during a Minneapolis Storm Bantum game at Blake Ice Arena earlier this month.

Tied with five minutes to go, the goalie froze the puck and players started pushing. Two were given penalties. While one player waited to get in the box, people watching said the referee went after the 14-year-old.

Some said it looked like the referee pushed his arm up like a football block and hit the boy under the chin, causing him to fall and hit the back of his head on the ice.

The head coach of the Bantum B-1 Storm, Ben Anderson, said he was concerned for the rest of his team’s safety and he said he wanted the game to stop. The referees refused and instead issued what’s called a match penalty, basically removing Anderson from coaching until a formal forum hears his side. He will be suspended for five more games for, according to the league, showing “unnecessary behavior” following the incident.

A spokesperson said that the referee accused of pushing the player was placed on leave while “rumors are swirling.”

The team planned to file a grievance against the referee, that way he’ll be up for a disciplinary hearing. WCCO learned all of the referees involved in that game were high ranking officials with a referee’s association.

Original Report On WCCO (Dec. 6, 2011)

Comments (34)
  1. bob says:

    If the player was trying to become involved in a scrum what should the referee do? If he allows to player to enter the scrum and he hurts a player then the referee is sued by the parents of the injured player. In this case it sounds like he attempted to stop the player by extending is arm. He did not push him, he did not slew foot him to knock him down. He protected the interests of every player involved by stopping this one player from entering the scrum! This whole incident was caused by poor coaching and a lack of discipline on the part of the player! Possibly from poor parenting!

    This is a perfect example of your damned if you do, your damned if you don’t!

    1. saywhaaaa says:

      How did he protect the interests of every player by hurting one? Hockey scrums happen all the time in games, you can’t say that is poor coaching or poor parenting. Not to mention a ref should be able to pull a player away from the pile without knocking him down.

      1. bob says:

        Since you have proven you have no hockey knowledge I will spell it out for you.

        Lets say the player that was “knocked down” came into the crowd and swung his stick striking a player in the head. That player will be hurt. Then, at least 1 if not 2 players from that team will go after the stick swinger. Then, players from his team come to his defense. Now what happens… more then one player end up hurt! Then multiple parents sue the referees for not protecting their kids! How do you not understand…..oh yeah, no hockey knowledge!!!

        Also, where do you see anything about pulling a player away from he pile? The referee extended his arm to stop the player. He can’t control a player losing his balance!

        The only reason scrums happen is a lack of discipline or a dumb coach yelling “take the body” or “hit him”. That is not how hockey is played! Any good coach would not allow his players to act in this manner!

        1. saywhaaaa says:

          haha you have ZERO hockey knowledge. You have clearly never played. Pretty sure you can’t sue a ref for an injury that happens during a game, every heard of a liability waiver??? oh yeah, ZERO hockey knowledge from bob the builder.

          1. bob says:

            27 years as a hockey referee say differently! I have worked games as low as squirts (that would be 10 year olds) all the way thru college (you should understand college)

            If you actually believe parents wouldn’t/can’t sue the referee, you are completely nuts! In this backwards world everyone can sue even if they dont have a valid reason!

            1. saywhaaaa says:

              liability forms say otherwise….send me a link to a news article about a parent suing a ref for an player injury, I would love to read it.

    2. boo says:

      You fully admit that you are assuming, but then go on to attack others that disagree. I’ll take the same tact as you – The article says that ‘People watching said the ref went after the 14 year old’ In this case it sounds like the referee took out his frustration on an innocent 14 year old. This whole incident was caused by a poor referee unable to control his rage, possibly from poor parenting.

      If you disagree, keep it to yourself because your opinion means that much to me.

    3. llp says:

      This is a assumption because you were not there. How can you past judgment if you do not have all of the facts or where there to see it.

      Perfect example of why comment sections are useless. Just a way of saying we suck at reporting the news

    4. jackactionhero says:

      You don’t know what you’re talking about.

      1. desert eagle .50 says:

        {;ease be specific. What doesn’t he know about?

        Please be specific.

  2. Disgusted with WCCO says:

    Nobody wins in this situation. A kid is hurt and Hockey officials are now given a bad name. What I don’t understand is why you continue to falsely report? Just to get your story out there?? Shame on you WCCO. There are 3 sides to every story. Your side, the other side, and the truth. Hope you can sleep at night knowing you only told one side.

    1. The Truth says:

      A hockey referee pushed a 14 year old and the kid ended up with a concussion. Is there any part of that statement that is false? If not, then WCCO is making the right call.

      1. realist04 says:

        Do you KNOW the ref pushed the kid? I found out from a completly neutral person who saw the event said the kid went after the ref because he got a penality. The kid also should not have been on the ice because he was post concussed form the week prior.
        This is a story about an overzealous parent, who is living through his kid and thinks he kid can do no wrong.
        Also WCCO – Learn to spell BANTAM!!! not banTUM!!! I would expect that spelling in Alabama, not Minnesota!

        1. jackactionhero says:

          The account you were given is false.

          The kid wasn’t involved in the scrum, and was not penalized at all.

          This is not a story about an overzealous parent.

  3. Deq says:

    Hockey is for people that cant play real sports like football or basketball.

    1. saywhaaaa says:

      if only basketball was a real sport….HA

    2. Psh...... says:

      Ahhhhhh yes because ANYONE can slap on a pair of skates, and chase around a little black puck with a long thin stick! OH PLEASE!

      ANY Monkey can grab a ball and run, unless of course you are on the Vikings or Wolfs. GO WILD! =)

      1. Deq says:

        If you cant run fast or jump you play sports like hockey, baseball and golf. I’m just saying.

        1. Ben says:

          If you aren’t smart, have little hand-eye coordination, cannot move your legs fast (similar to running), aren’t tough, aren’t athletic….then you don’t play hockey.

          Glad we are all in agreement here.

          Stop talking Deq

          1. Ben says:

            Also, if it came down to a fight, I would take a hockey player over a football player or basketball player anyday. They have more heart.

            Hit the bricks nerd.

        2. fatpig@ says:

          haha running fast and jumping makes what you named off real sports!!! HAHAH running fast and jumping is also something most basketball players do when they are not on the court. ie running from po po

    3. realist04 says:

      Deq – You obviously have no idea what it takes to play hockey and it shows with your comment.

  4. voice of reason says:

    once again our society immediately blames the authority figure in the incident. whats wrong with this world???

    1. an actual hockey ref says:

      Morons like saywhaaa have no idea what they are talking about, yet they still get an opinion! Thats whats wrong with this world!

      out of all of these comments bob is the only one making any points! everyone else is just flapping their gums!

      1. saywhaaaa says:

        whatever you say, bob…..

  5. Ben says:

    Weird..an actualy hockey ref backing up an even dumber hockey ref.

    You guys are like cops. Quit backing up up your crooked partners and admit when there was wrong doing. Obviously, this ref lost control, both emotionally, and, subsequently, physically. This is why authority figures are supposed to be held accountable. They are supposed to be above losing control.

    Morons. Bob and an actual ref, you both are like simple jack; taking dumps in bath tubs and laughing your butt off.

    1. realist04 says:

      You obviously have NO idea what really happened.

      1. kid that got punched in the face by the ref says:

        you must though…..

        1. realist04 says:

          yes, neutral party with no affiliation to refs, kids, teams, or parents.

          1. jackactionhero says:

            Your “neutral party” is lying.

            The boy was not involved in the scrum. He was not being penalized either. The ref grabbed him and threw him to the ice.

            That is from someone who was THERE, not from your bogus source.

            1. Ben says:

              THANK YOU.

              I knew numerous people that were there (coworkers, friends). They all said the same thing.

  6. j speedbag 64 says:

    it’s easy for a man to ”pancake”a boy..i say the ref should have known it’s just kids,he should of wrapped the kid up with his arms instead of the classic ”clothes line” to the upper body………..

  7. Lee says:

    Back to WCCO and poor reporting and repeating poor reporting. Obvioiusly others were at the game and saw the situation totally different than the WCCO report….
    How hard would it have been to interview an attendee that had a different view of what happened. I guess its easier to interview the kid’s coach, his parents and friends. …….. Some journalistic skills…

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