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Gatineau Olympiques’ Gabriel Bourret suspended 2 games after hitting Rouyn-Noranda fan (UPDATED)

Gabriel Bourret is an overage defenceman with Gatineau (The Canadian Press)

Fans can be pretty nasty, but that never excuses what a hockey player might do if the frustration boils over. For the second time this month in major junior hockey, a 20-year-old defenceman is in trouble after making physical contact with a taunting spectator.

Two weeks ago, the Belleville Bulls' Jake Cardwell received a 10-game suspension after retaliating against an Oshawa Generals supporter who was taunting his teammates as they left the ice following the second period. Saturday, the Gatineau Olympiques' Gabriel Bourret lost control during a game against the division rival Rouyn-Noranda Huskies. The La Frontiere newspaper is reporting that a fan complained to the Sûreté du Québec provincial police after Bourret allegedly struck him with his stick while in the penalty box. The QMJHL will hold a hearing on Monday.

(Update, Tuesday 1:45 p.m.: Bourret has been suspended two games by the QMJHL.)

Bourret was called for cross-checking 9:10, bringing a chorus of boos from Huskies fans. Reports indicated that Bourret threw a water bottle into the stands. Then, apparently, a spectator approached the penalty box. Bourret retaliated by swinging his stick through a gap in the glass around the penalty box, hitting the fan in the mouth.

From Stéphane Leroux (@StephRDSJunior):

Bourret was not ejected from the game, which Rouyn-Noranda won 8-2. Regardless, if there was enough to the incident to warrant police involvement and the media reporting on it, then it has to be taken seriously.

Leroux thin-slices it perfectly, though. Getting physically involved with a fan is inexcusable. Based on the reports, it seems the Huskies supporter left his seat in a show of 'I'm on the other side of the glass' courage to heckle a 20-year-old. One wonders at the mentality. Two wrongs don't make a right, though.

Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet. Please address any questions, comments or concerns to btnblog@yahoo.ca.

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