LOVELAND, Colo. (CBS4) – An assistant coach for the Colorado Eagles professional hockey team has been benched for the rest of the season for the way he expressed his anger at the referees.

The coach was so mad he took off his clothes in the third period of the Eagles 5-1 win on Saturday.

Video posted on YouTube shows a referee pushing an Eagles player backward toward the Eagles bench as fighting continued on the ice. After about 50 seconds of pandemonium, the Eagles’ assistant coach, Greg Pankewicz, took off his jacket and threw it onto the ice, apparently angry at the ref.

“The automatic suspension of one game and a fine came from throwing items onto the ice,” Central Hockey League Director of Operations Bob Huffan said.

Huffan said Pankewicz earned a harsher 14-game penalty as the angry stripping continued. Pankewicz threw his shoes and eventually his shirt. He continued the tirade in just pants and socks.

“Many people, I’m sure, have seen the video and have seen the lengths that it went to on top of that, which is what was taken into account during the deliberation process of what further penalties should be given to Mr. Pankewicz,” Huffan told CBS4.

Pankewicz played professional hockey for 18 years, including six seasons with the Eagles, before hanging up his skates this season to coach.

The league commissioner issued a statement saying, “The Central Hockey League will not tolerate such behavior and found Mr. Pankewicz’s conduct to be completely unacceptable to our member clubs, the officiating staff and our fans.”

“He’s been suspended for the remainder of the regular season. What that equates to for the Eagles is they have 14 games remaining in the regular season. He’s more than able to coach in the playoffs,” Huffan said.

The Eagles spokesman said the team wouldn’t comment on the suspension.

The coach and the team were also fined, but the league won’t say how much.

The stripping was similar to a scene in the cult hockey movie Slap Shot, starring Paul Newman.

Comments (59)
  1. Bill Locklear says:

    I was at the game and Pankewicz was completely justified. The ref blindside tackled an Eagle’s player. The ref held the players arms as he felt to the ice. The player is now on injured reserve for a concussion. The wrong person was suspended. The ref should receive a permanent ban.

    1. LEL MN says:

      The guy takes his cloths off because he’s angry?? Don’t you think that a rather strange reaction?

      1. Jack says:

        @LEL MN,

        Before you say another word, go rent a copy of ”Slapshot”

    2. Sheldonrs says:

      I hope he doesn’t get road rage. He’ll be naked by the time the cops get there!

    3. Bob Miller says:

      “Panky” played in Houston for us a couple of years and was a fan favorite. The guy always worked his butt off. I remember one game he took a shot straight to the face and believe me it was a tough thing to see. Although coaches need to be the one always in command, let’s face it. They’re human too. Look at any sport and you will see tirades of all kinds. Greg lost it for a few minutes and yes he went overboard however I wouldn’t want to play for a team that the players and coaches weren’t there to cover my back. The suspension length is wrong. Yes, one was needed but some players are intentionally hurting others and get 2, 3 or 4 games even when the injured player is out indefinately. 14 games for throwing your shirt onto the ice?

    4. mdougal says:

      You are correct to say the wrong person was suspended. The Linesman, Chris Wilson, should receive suspension and fine at least equal to Mr. Pankewicz for the blindsiding assault on Mr. Grimaldi. You are incorrect, however, that Mr. Grimaldi is on “injured reserve”. He is not. Nor has there been a reported concussion. He played in Wed. night’s game vs. the Rush and is in the lineup for tomorrow’s game vs. Wichita.

  2. Jeffrey Gower says:

    This makes him a candidate for Congress now.

  3. Hank Warren says:

    Moronic coaches, Lindsay Lohan, Jersey Shore, all distractions. As the Mainstream Media creates illusions, the US gov’t (and their corp. friends),start more illegal wars, ban books like “America Deceived II” and bail out banks.
    Last link (before Google Books bans it also]:

    1. TruthMeister says:

      Give it a rest already! You can buy America Deceived II at Amazon.

      1. liberal trash says:

        you’re a paranoid schitzo only trying to sell a stupid, pathetic book of lies.

    2. bill says:

      I knew it, Bush did this too .By the way your “banned” book is available for sale all over the internet and at bookstores. Maybe “they” are just banning you, and maybe I am one of “them” or maybe you are one of “them” Maybe none of “them” are actually “them” or maybe…… and I thought it was just a hockey game!

    3. Randall Jones says:

      Hank…..your stupid.

      1. Scott Martin says:

        Randall…Respectfully, I think you meant “Hank…you’re stupid.”

        two extra dots and forgot to make proper use of the pronoun when you used the possessive form. Just sayin’…

  4. jimmy says:

    This is a valid protest technique, as all Slapshot fans understand

    1. bill says:

      Jimmy, Finally, someone out there who gets it! Only to be followed by the classic “Now trade me the f@#k right now”

      1. Reggie Dunlop says:

        One of the great movies of our time. I loved ‘Slap Shot’!

    2. Toe Blake says:

      Old Time Hockey !!!

    3. Lynn says:

      Classic. If you don’t know hockey, don’t comment. Definitely valid protest technique…

  5. william says:

    he’s watched one too many Matthew McConaughey movies

  6. CUBBUC says:


  7. JBar595 says:

    In reality most on ice hockey officials have escaped from mental institutions and have no clue what they are doing, aside from being the most arrongant AW on the face of the earth, fans have to put up with them because they are protected by guess what? Unions.

  8. Bill P. says:

    Thank God I live in Atlanta and not in Denver. You all are a bunch of NUTS!!!!

    1. sharon says:

      I live in GA and fans there are lame. They don’t even realize that the Knights are gone. The Thrashers must love how you yell knights during the anthem. Nashville fans rock, however. Too bad the Hansons weren’t at the game to take care of business!

    2. Bill L says:

      Thanks! The goal of every true hockey fan

  9. Chris says:

    Seems to me to be a fairly passive form of protest.

  10. Denis Lemieux says:

    Who HONES the team ?

    1. slapshot fan says:

      trade me right f’n now!

    2. slapshot fan says:

      morris you make me sick when you talk like that.

    3. Ned Braden says:

      no no never, you’re just a stupid english pig when you do something like that.

      1. Bill says:

        Chrysler plant here I come.

  11. Fanny Forbes Franlen says:

    “No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.” ~ H. L. Mencken

  12. John C says:

    Immature adults should not be allowed to coach or play professional hockey.

    1. Scott Martin says:

      While you are just sayin’, can we all get pet bunnies (with cookies)…LOL Doesn’t sound like you have a lot of experience with sports in general or professional sports since the mid 70’s…

      1. John says:

        People like John C are the a-typical “Oprah-fied” wuss-bag liberal. Which brings up a bigger question: Why do Liberal men have much larger vaginas than their wives?

  13. Patrick Roy says:

    I believe that Pankewicz was justified in reacting this way. I encourage all types of expression when you believe that things are not going your way and you need to make a statement – this is what you need to do. I don’t think we need to take $hit from anyone.
    Sometimes you need to let the goalie go kick the other goalies ar$e as well.
    This is what I teach my kids…

  14. myteensavers says:

    myteensavers loved this clip! It’s like a scene out of slapshot!

  15. Johnny Upton says:

    I’m gonna flash’ em, Joe!

    1. Alcatraz Jones says:

      and everybody but my wife will scream . . . .

  16. Ned Braden says:

    bleed on ’em, let’m know you’re there.

    1. Morris 'Mo' Wanchuk says:

      The newscaster that intriduces the clip above is Reggie Dunlops wife ! What are the odds of that ?

  17. Floyd DaBarber says:

    We’ll have none of this “men naked from the waist up” behavior. Don’t they know there are impressionable children in the stands ??

    Now let’s get back to slamming each other’s heads into the boards and punching each other out.

  18. Reggie Dunlop says:

    “And remember I went up to your room afterwards and you were dressed in chick’s clothes? Yeah, you had on this black bra with tassels! You were dancing in front of a mirror with this kinda zebra skin jockstrap. ”

    / Best sports movie ever

  19. Alcatraz Jones says:

    “Take it off! Take it all off!” Lily Braden

  20. Unemployed Joe says:

    Very srange behavior; sounds like a senator in Washington. Maybe Obummer can arrange a “beer” summit for Hank the Tank.

  21. Bill says:

    ..”.with the litigation, the notoriety, his subsequent deportation to Canada and that country’s refusal to accept him, well, I guess that’s more than most 21-year-olds can handle… Ogie Ogilthorpe!

  22. Bill says:

    The best coaches stick up for their team no matter what.

  23. Joe Astuccio says:

    Who OWN da Chiefs??

  24. dean says:

    “The stripping was similar to a scene in the cult hockey movie Slap Shot, starring Paul Newman.”

    NO WAY IT WAS NOT!! Go back and watch the movie again!!

  25. Bryant Gumble says:

    More BUSH LEAGUE CHL GARBAGE!!! Another reason hockey will never get a Network TV contract or be considered one of the Big 3 sports in America.

  26. R Theryoung says:

    Its ok to hit opponents with sticks, run opposing players into the boards, blindside hits, trips and fights at will ,but god forbid, don’t throw clothing on the ice. Don’t know
    of many players who are punished that severely for vicious attacks on one another. Don’t know that the punishment fits the crime. It was a childish act at best.

  27. Moulon says:

    He should have done the FULL Monty!

    1. Smack says:

      Yes, full Monty! if his pants had flown on the ice, I was buying season tickets for life right then!

  28. Spike says:

    I am with Panks all the way. He was standing up for his team when the linesman went way beyond acceptable conduct. The player could have been injured and hadn’t done anything to deserve getting body slammed face first into the ice with his arms restrained. The suspension was excessive and the non suspension of the linesman is not acceptable. By the way I am a liberal and will kick your ass if you claim the my vagina is bigger than my wifes!

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