Although it happened in February, first Court appearances in Cook County Illinois did not take place until March 13, for two Illiana Blackbird players. The Blackbirds are members of the Minnesota Junior Hockey League.
The story began circulating the day after the arrests when Blackbird players began telling the story of the arrests to other MNJHL players. That’s right kids, players always talk, might be time to take those beer pyramid photos down of facebook huh?
Yesterday TJHN was emailed the Court records of Goaltender Konstantin Shipunovs and Forward Chad Miller. Violation of Illinois Criminal Code section 720-570/402-C are the charges. Possession of Heroin is the plain English phrase. Yep that’s right these are the two awesome athletes I mentioned in my story a few weeks ago.
Although court documents have the Goaltenders name spelled incorrectly, TJHN was able to confirm that is was indeed the Blackbird player.
Shipunovs is a resident of Riga Latvia, and Miller is a resident of Portage La Prairie, Manitoba. Both players are said to be in the United States on visitors visa’s.
TJHN has learned that United States Customs and Immigration Services has been informed by other Illiana Blackbirds player parents that these arrests did take place. Apparently some people within the teams families are not happy that these players are still being allowed to compete, let alone stay in the country.
TJHN has also learned that these same families are so upset that they are informing state authorities that these players will be leaving the State of Illinois this weekend to compete in MNJHL Conference and League final playoff rounds.
Why are they upset about players on their own team? One parent had this to say;
“We understand people have problems in life. But just because these are two of our better players does not mean they should get special treatment. Winning is not important in this type of situation, consequences for actions and learning from those are what is important.”
Another parent had this to say;
“They have gotten special treatment all year. I can’t believe they were not removed from the team. So much for a zero tolerance policy when one of the players is related to the owner.”
While the Blackbirds did suspend the players for a few weeks internally, the players did return to the ice in time for the playoffs. How bad does a player have to screw up to be kicked off a team? Gee I feel bad for kids that were cut from teams this season for having a few beers now! Hell I have seen players kicked off teams for being late for curfew!
Other stories are beginning to surface with this one, fortunately none of those stories resulted in arrests, but it sure sounds like this is no first incident on the Blackbirds squad. But hey, they just be “living the dream” right? Fashizzle! Hey anyone got an extra syringe I can barrow? No? Damn, how about a straw then?
TJHN reached out to the Blackbirds and the MNJHL for comment and neither responded. Then again, what can you really say?
David Wagner – The Angel Of Death – For Those Who Live Stupidly I salute You
*The Death Pool is a mix of comedy, and satire in connection with recent events. It is not an official report of current events although it may look as though the news is so accurate that it could one day happen or may be happening.