Thursday, 23 October 2014

Slava Voynov's attorney tries to downplay his domestic assault as a cultural misunderstanding.

Ryan Lambert of Puck Daddy:
(Not ranked this week: People who believe “innocent until proven guilty” applies to the NHL's supplementary discipline.

The only thing worth saying about Slava Voynov at this point is that the league clearly got it right, and we don't have to wait to get any real details to know that much. The fact that he got suspended before news broke tells you things in this case are pretty bad, as does his organization and coach basically saying, “This had to be done.”

Voynov does not get the benefit of the doubt from the league and his team and his coach because of the climate in sports today. That's a good thing. Bill Daly can say all he wants that the circumstances here are different than they were with Semyon Varlamov last year, and that's true. But it's only because now, if there's even a whiff that a pro athlete might have assaulted a woman, the Ray Rice thing (and more specifically the NFL's handling of it) basically ensures justice will be swift, and err on the side of not rousing public opinion against the league/team involved by standing with the player during his “tough time.”

People need to keep in mind that “innocent until proven guilty” applies only to the law. The NHL is under now obligation to extend such courtesy to paid employees because they are not putting him in jail, nor are they cutting off his paychecks. They're just not allowing him to play hockey. Frankly, that's the least they can do in this day and age.)

Couldn't agree more with Ryan Lambert.  This isn't a big misunderstanding, or a case of mistaken identity.  The poor victim didn't confuse this Slava Voynov with another Slava Voynov she's also dating who also plays for the Kings.

Mr. Voynov hit her hard and/or often enough that she had to go to the Emergency Room, with all the motivation he might have had to avoid all that scene.  The nurses figured out what was going on and called the police.  They arrested him when he couldn't explain the injuries occurring any other manner: a car crash, or a tumble into an in-ground pool they were putting in.

Now Mr. Voynov's lawyer Craig Renetzky is trying to tamp down the flames of controversy, saying there's more to the story, that it's all a case of a clash of cultures, more than a clash of fist and cheekbone.

There's no need for us to withhold judgment on this one, prudently, just in case.  Mr. Renetzky didn't manage to offer any reasonable explanation to exonerate his client.  There is no one-armed man involved.  Mr. Voynov is as guilty as Ray Rice was, back when we 'only' had the first video to base our conclusions on, the one when he's dragging out his unconscious girlfriend out of the elevator with the care he'd take with a sack of potatoes.

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