Washington Capitals forward prospect Damien Riat would play Just 38 seconds of Saturday night’s Swiss National League game between Geneve-Servette and Lugano. Riat would exit the ice, serving a match penalty for checking Lugano defender Elia Riva headlong into the boards.
Riva would eventually leave the ice under his own power, albeit with some help from his teammates. He was taken to a local hospital where he was later diagnosed with a severe concussion.
As a result of the play, Riat has subsequently been suspended for seven games and fined 6,000 Francs (about $6,740), including procedural costs.
According to Blick.ch, Riat stated in the proceedings that the game was very fast, that he neither perceived the dangerous distance from the boards nor saw that Riva was in a defenseless situation. He didn’t want to hurt his opponent, immediately inquired about his condition and apologized.
Riat stated he has never been banned in his career and he feels bad because of this incident. He cannot be accused of malice or intention to injure. The incident was rather an unfortunate chain of circumstances.
The Capitals loaned Riat to the Geneve-Servette Hockey Club of the Swiss National League on August 4 to begin the 2020-21 hockey season. It was expected that the Capitals would recall Riat to North America when the organization’s 2020-21 season training camp opened, according to the Capitals official release, However, it was later decided that Riat would remain in Switzerland and not travel to the US to participate in training camp.
For the season Riat has seven goals and 11 assists (18 points) in 20 games played for Geneve-Servette.
By Jon Sorensen