When mentioning hockey, China does not immediately come to mind; in fact, China and hockey, well… really aren’t a great match. Currently, China ranks a disappointing 37th in the world; not quite something to boast about. However, the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics are fast approaching and China is determined to introduce the sport to its citizens.
Well, those in Beijing who watched an exhibition match this week between the Kunlun Red Stars and Barys Astana were in for a rude introduction to the more violent side of hockey as essentially the entire home team fell victim to the violent wrath of Barys Astana’s Damir Raspiyev, RT reports.
The match was hosted by the recently installed Beijing Kunlun Red Stars. The team was established to help invigorate the dismal hockey scene in China and has joined the Kontinental Hockey League (Russia’s answer to the NHL). However, the majority of the team isn’t even Chinese. Most of the players were drafted out of Russia, except for Zach Yuen — a Hong Kong native that grew up in Canada.
Meanwhile, Damir Raspiyev, Kazakhstan native, is notorious for being a wild card on the ice. The “passionate” player hasn’t managed to rack up any points so far in 23 games, but has accumulated 194 penalty minutes. He has been suspended for the rest of the preseason by the KHL.
In the video, Raspiyev is seen throwing several punches toward Kunlun’s Tomáš Marcinko as he lays listless on the ice. Growing tired of an unresponsive opponent, Raspiyev goes from Red Star player to Red Star player looking for a fight. In a last ditch effort to ignite the brawl of his dreams, Raspiyev launches himself into the opposing bench, but provokes nothing more than irritated shoves.
Because of the brawl, the game was canceled, lasting a grand total of 3 minutes.
The Red Stars have reported the incident to police, while Raspiyev has promised a “warm welcome” the next time he faces the Red Stars.
Watch the video below:
By Robin Winship
[h/t The Nanfang]