A Victoria Royals forward won’t hit the lineup until at least December after a Western Hockey League sanction announced Wednesday (Sept. 27).
Alex Edwards is suspended for 25 games for a match penalty on Everett Silvertips defenceman Dexter Whittle during a Sept. 23 regular season game.
Midway through the second period of that game, Edwards was assessed a match penalty for intent to injure on an illegal hit from behind. Whittle was later released from hospital, but remains out of the game indefinitely, according to a Sept. 26 Silvertips release.
“In addition to the severity of Edwards’ actions, other key factors considered in the decision include the severe injury to the opponent on the play and the fact Edwards is a repeat offender, having been suspended twice previously last season,” the WHL wrote.
Edwards is eligible to return to the Royals lineup on Friday, Dec. 1.
The Victoria hockey club released a statement Wednesday afternoon addressing the suspension.
“The Victoria Royals understand and respect this decision. The entire royals organization continues to have Dexter Whittle in our thoughts and we wish him a full recovery,” the statement reads.
The Royals signed the Grand Forks native – then a 6’1”, 190-pound, 16-year-old with the Kelowna Chiefs – in December 2021.
A statement on the suspension of Alex Edwards. pic.twitter.com/S0CIb4oFNo— Victoria Royals (@victoriaroyals) September 27, 2023