In a Saturday game against the Southern Conference’s top team, Bratislava had just taken a 2-1 lead late in the second when Eagle veteran Troy Brouwer made a move that will cost him a league suspension.
After a battle against the boards just inside the Bratislava blueline, Brouwer and Josef Vasicek stopped playing and faced each other, apparently yelling insults. Vasicek did the quick head thrust thing toward Brouwer, hoping to get him to flinch and Brouwer responded with a slash right to Vasicek’s Easter eggs.
Vasicek, who is second all-time in plus-minus ratings, plays the third-line left wing for Paris and he will be out at least a week. To make matters worse for Coach Michel Therrien, another left winger was injured in the dying seconds of the 4-1 game when Benoit Pouliot limped off with a hernia injury. The team has no extra left wings listed on the roster, but it could use Martin Erat, Jack Callow, Mike Ribiero and Sergei Zinovjev to fill in for Vasicek and Pouliot.
Sepp Blatter, the league’s Director of Player Safety and Discipline, said he looked at several factors when deciding on whether to suspend Brouwer. First, he said, it was apparent that Vasicek deserved to be rapped in the groin. “He has had that coming for a long time,” Blatter said. “But still, we have to protect all players, even Paris players. General Manager Ralph Booth was difficult to deal with, but eventually he paid … attention.”
Brouwer will have to sit out the next 4 Bratislava games: two against Athens, one against Moscow and one against Stockholm. He will be eligible to play again 9 days from now when the Eagles host the Munich Dire Wolf.