Who ever said that European ice hockey players were not as tough as their North American counterparts? Although his career in the NHL is over, Dominik Hasek, who was one of the best goaltenders of all time, continues to compete in many sporting events here in his native Czech Republic. As Martin Hrobsky reports, the Dominator may have gone too far while playing in an in-line hockey game.
Czech police are reportedly investigating former NHL goaltender Dominik Hasek after he allegedly beat another player unconscious during a weekend in-line hockey game. A police spokesperson told reporters that the investigation was looking into whether Hasek engaged in punishable actions by trying to injure someone.
Hasek, who retired from the NHL after winning the Stanley Cup as a goalie with the Detroit Red Wings in 2002, was playing as a skater for a Czech in-line hockey team when he and the other player made contact. Tomas Brezina who is the general secretary of the Czech in-line hockey association explains what happened.
"The incident took place between two Pardubice teams. In the 16th minute of the game there was contact between the two players, Martin Sila and Dominik Hasek, and Martin Sila was injured. At this moment I do not have the report from the referee so I am not able to tell you anything more. But we will have a disciplinary meeting because the referee took Hasek's player licence, so I believe that it was a serious injury in that game. I know that the player is in the hospital at the moment. So the league will take action next week when we will have a meeting with Mr. Hasek and there will be a disiplenary meeting to solve this problem."
One report says that Hasek even broke the other player's nose, and knocked him unconscious after hitting him repeatedly with his hockey stick. Although Hasek was generally a composed player on ice he was known to be hot tempered at times, but nothing ever this serious. Here's what Dominik Hasek told Czech radio:
"If you say my team-mate who the other guy hit, I spoke to him. The guy game me a crosscheck and then he game my team-mate a shot to his face. I think that he should reflect on what he did."
Dominik Hasek is considered one of the greatest hockey goaltenders of all time. In 1998 he led the Czechs to an Olympic gold medal. He twice won the NHL's most valuable player award, as well as the Vezina Trophy as the league's top goalie, a total of six times. It would be a shame if this load incident tarnishes the record of one of the NHL's best goaltenders.