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OHL suspends Niagara IceDogs' GM, head coach after investigation into Whatsapp conversation

Hockey sticks are seen in this file photo. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey) Hockey sticks are seen in this file photo. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

The Ontario Hockey League has suspended Niagara IceDogs' general manager, along with the head coach, after an investigation into a text message conversation.

OHL Commissioner David Branch announced on Wednesday the team's general manager, Joey Burke, and head coach, Billy Burke, have been "indefinitely suspended."

They also face, along with the team, a combined $150,000 fine, the league said. 

The OHL said an investigation was launched last month after the league received transcripts of a WhatsApp conversation.

The league did not make the contents of those transcripts public.

According to the OHL, the conversation violated the league’s harassment and diversity policy, and "runs counter to the OHL's Onside program, which emphasizes the importance of demonstrating respect for women through actions and words."

Joey Burke and Billy Burke will not be allowed to apply for reinstatement until June 1, 2024, the OHL said.

"At that time, the commissioner will assess whether they have successfully completed counselling and education to ensure that there will be no additional violations of league rules, policies, or expected conduct." Top Stories

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