I was fully prepared to take a look at the good things that International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) was doing in terms of penalizing hits to the head, especially those that result in concussions. Before I lash out at the IIHF let me highlight the good thing, watch this hit;
Radeck Martinek of the Czech team and New York Islander (red) was drilled into the boards by Artus Kulda of Latvia with a lot of the force going to the head. It is difficult to see weather it was Kulda’s shoulder or actual head that made contact with Martinek, regardless upon trying to skate off Martinek fell to the ice. He was later diagnosed to have a concussion. The IIHF wasted no time in suspending Kulda for three games for this action. Which in my opinion is a very good and swift reaction, especially due to the fact that IIHF hockey bans all contact to the head.
That is where the “pats on the back” end as in the same day this occurred;
Sweeden’s Mattias Sjogren not only drove Norway’s Lars Lokken Ostli into the boards; he left his feet, targeted the head and even used his arm to do so. Did the IIHF suspend Sjogren? Nope!
What gives? A double standard seems to be obvious but why that exists in a mystery, both hits were head shots, against the rules in IIHF hockey, and both resulted in “obvious brain function disruption” a.k.a.; concussion. Just thought the world ought to know.