Belfast Giants player/coach Steve Thornton has been suspended for two games by the bmibaby Elite League with immediate effect. Following a request from the Hull Stingrays for Supplementary Discipline following an alleged tripping incident in the game between the two sides in Belfast on December 18th, league officials studied the video evidence on Christmas Eve and finalised their conclusions on Boxing Day.
In the game on December 18th, Steve Thornton became involved with Stingrays netminder Curtis Cruickshank in an incident that saw the Hull goalie sustain injury. Whilst no penalty was adjudged against Thornton on the night, the Hull Stingrays felt strongly enough to request a review of the game tape.
League officials reviewed the video evidence and judged that Thornton was guilty of Tripping Cruickshank and that the incident was serious enough to warrant a Match Suspension. Furthermore in view of the incident involving a netminder and resulting in an injury, officials have assessed the Giants player/coach an additional one game suspension.
Steve Thornton will miss the Giants games at home on December 27th versus the Edinburgh Capitals and the away game in Hull on December 28th. The suspensions also preclude him from appearing on the team bench and acting as bench coach.