NOJHL appeal process

Randy Russon
April 9, 2018

If you happen to be one of those who is expressing outrage at Robert Mazzuca for the reduction in suspension to Rayside Balfour Canadians forward James White, don’t take your hostilities out on the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League commissioner.

It was Mazzuca, as commissioner, who originally suspended White for 10 games for what was determined to be a blind side hit on Soo Thunderbirds centre Camaryn Baber in the opening game of the current NOJHL championship series.

Baber subsequently suffered his second concussion in less than a month at the hands of a Rayside Balfour player and will not play again this season.

At any rate, Rayside Balfour subsequently appealed the suspension to White and the NOJHL appeal board reduced it from 10 games to three.

Mazzuca is not part of the NOJHL appeal board.

Following is a word-for-word, unedited copy of the NOJHL appeal process.

“Hockey Operation decision by the Commissioner can be Appealed to the Appeal Board.

The Appeal Board will consist of 3 independent persons, not associated with any
Member Club, have no previous affiliation with any member club in the previous 3
years. The Board of Directors will approve the members of the Appeal Board.

If a member wants to Appeal the decision of the Commissioner, it must do so in writing
within 12 hours of the Notice of Suspension/Fine notifying the Executive Director and
the League Office they will be Appealing the decision.

The League Office will automatically invoice the member the $500-dollar Fee. Until an Appeal can be heard, the Decision of the Commissioner remains in force.

The Chair of the Appeal Panel, will convene a Hearing between the Member and the Commissioner at the earliest convenience.

The Panel shall: permit the parties to present their cases in accordance with due process and the rules of natural justice; and i) inquire of all parties as to the possible impact of any decision or ruling for consideration as it sees fit. The Panel, they may take any, some or all of the following actions:

i) Uphold the decision of the Commissioner

ii) Reverse the Decision of the Commissioner

iii) Increase the fine or suspension by the Commissioner

iv) Decrease the fine or suspension by the Commissioner

v) Amend the decision of the Commissioner

vi) grant a refund of up to 50% of the Appeal Application fee in cases where the
appellant has been substantially successful in his/her Appeal;

vii) Adjourn the disposition of the Appeal Application provided that written
notification of the decision is delivered to all parties within 10 days of the

viii) A decision of the Panel shall be final and binding on all Parties.”

What you think about “NOJHL appeal process”

  1. Well said Randy! Being commissioner isn’t an easy job and no one can ever keep everyone happy! Keep up the good work Mr. Mazzuca!

  2. The Mane ruling by the board today is just another slap in the face by the “committee “ on the T-Birds. Makes the league look real bad.

  3. Mayne and Leishman talked before faceoff agreed to fight and had the gloves off at puck drop. That’s a staged fight an an automatic 3 games in all Jr A and B leagues across the country. Anyone that argues clearly does not know the rules. Just like when thunderbird player king lined up on wing instead of his usual position and jumped the eagles player at puck drop. That was an automatic 3 games and king got another for instigating as the eagles player didnt want to fight didnt drop his gloves and was pounded to the ice. Parco was fined big time for it also. So stop being idiots, learn the rules of the game and get over it. If that happened to a thunderbird player you people would be demanding jail time!!!

  4. Still talking about this? Get over it already!
    My God, lets talk about things that really matter!

  5. After watchimg the hit it is obvious what the goal was from the RBC player. Considering the mandate of Hockey Canada to get headshots out of the game, I cannot understand what the reasoning was for reducing the suspension. Regardless of what team it is, an unbiased observer can clearly see the intent to injure. Very disappointing decision by the appeal board. I hooe this decision does not set a precedent. And most importantly, hopefully the Thunderbirds player can fully recover.

  6. I agree with Penny.
    Mr Mazzuca has not had an easy job as Commissioner.
    He is a hard working individual with the best of the league his priority.
    A couple of main things come to my mind that he has done…
    The Concussion Policy, Mental Health Partnership with the
    Canadian Mental Association and expanding the league to 12 teams .
    Mr Mazzuca did assess 10 games to White but he cannot control what
    the board over-rules.
    I am sure he was not pleased with the Boards decision.
    It would be nice if there would be some kind of bulletin sent out to the
    public or on as to this decision and how it came about.
    The” he said she said” on this needs clarified and blame against Mr Mazzuca stopped for once and all.
    This man is a very caring person who wants the best for each team.
    If there is an issue or a team needs help you can go to him at anytime.

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