OHA Comes Down Hard On Maroons
The Ontario Hockey Association came down hard on the Chatham Maroons for their player card infractions. The Maroons, dressed an illegal player for two games earlier this year, and were punished by the GOJHL’s governing body this week.
For breaking the league’s import player rules, the Maroons were fined $4,500, and more importantly, will lose five player cards for next season.
The OHA also suspended owner and general manager Bill Szekesy for one year. Although Mark Davis was hired as the Chatham Maroons’ coach and general manager in the off-season, Szekesy retained the role of signing general manager.
Despite playing with ineligible players in two games earlier this season, one against the St. Marys Lincolns, and one against the Leamington Flyers, who Chatham is battling with in the standings, neither team had yet to protest Chatham’s wins, meaning the Maroons have the chance to keep those points in the standings.
Next season, the Maroons will face difficulties if they’re forced to make roster moves, as the total number of cards the Maroons can use throughout the season, including players they trade or release, will drop to 30, from the customary 35 as a result of the punishment.
Szekesy also will lose his signing abilities, and will not be able to have game day contact with the team, however, if Davis returns, this portion of the punishment is unlikely to have any impact on the day-to-day operations of the Maroons.
Chatham has the ability to go through an appeals process on the rulings.
The Maroons currently sit two points out of second, and five points out of first in the GOJHL’s Western Conference, and play the first place LaSalle Vipers this Wednesday in LaSalle.