Last Tuesday, ice hockey officials awarded a highly controversial last-second goal to Russia, which has most likely denied the Americans the opportunity to compete in the Deaflympic gold medal match today.
Rules of sport are always complicated and fraught with difficulty. But it s also the responsibility of competition organisers to ensure that the selection of tournament officials is done correctly in order to avoid any doubt when it comes to the interpretation of rules.
The controversial goal has been analysed from different angles by television and amateur video footage. The Americans submitted the initial protest within the 30-minute window. When the result came back still in favour of the goal, the Americans lodged an appeal – this too was overruled despite overwhelming evidence in favour of America.
You can see the video evidence for yourself here. Thanks to “Juciermk”
Two days ago, Two Big Ears consulted with their own contacts in Ice Hockey, who are independent from Deaf sport. Their conclusion is that the referee’s decision is final.
Now, normally, we would move on and chalk it all down to experience. But not on this occasion, because the Americans are now waking up and coming to terms with what it is really like to get into bed with the Russians. The official USA Winter Deaflympic news service believes “This event will most certainly result in continued discussions, and hopefully changes so that other teams so not suffer similar injustices in future events.”
Based on the evidence presented to us, the conclusion is that, as long as Russia is in charge of the Deaflympics, the ICSD will allow mismanagement to continue. Host nations will continue to select tournament officials that swing decision-making in their favour. The Russians are not stupid, but they are arrogant, and corrupt deep within their national psyche. Here are the ten reasons why Russia beat America 6-5 on Tuesday evening.
1. HOST NATION-BIAS
The Russian government has invested heavily into Deaf sport and the Deaflympics. On the one hand this is to be applauded, and puts other nations such as the USA and the UK to shame. However, they are a nation whose politics, economy and sport is so heavily entrenched in corruption that they should not have been allowed to host in the first place. The Russian Deaf Sport Federation (RDSF) did not pay the required $25,000 registration fee when originally applying to host the games, this action contributing to the fiscal mess that the ICSD now find themselves in. Approval was only given once RDSF’s own people had taken over the asylum.
2. THE ICSD ARE NOT IN CHARGE.
First of all, evidence strongly demonstrates that the ICSD have lost control of the 13th Winter Deaflympics and the Russians are taking every advantage possible to ensure they win. Whilst Two Big Ears applauds Russia for working in partnership with non-deaf people to host the games, they are seen by others to have taken advantage of the controversial last-second goal to ensure that a team of veteran ice hockey professionals are not defeated by a young and upcoming team of American youngsters.
Secondly, sportsMX TV reported that ICSD President Rukhledev was brought in to mediate between the Russians and the Americans over the goal controversy. By participating in this way, Rukhledev and demonstrated yet again his incompetency to lead the Deaflympic movement;
a) He is the President and therefore cannot be involved with any disputes – but he chose to ignore this and carry on anyway.
b) He is Russian, so how was he going to make himself impartial to any decision-making? Why did he not instruct his neutral Vice President to attend the meeting instead?
c) It was the responsibility of the ICSD TD to resolve the dispute, not the President.
3. THE PROTEST COMMITTEE IS BIASED
The ICSD regulations allow the host (The Organising Committee) to choose who takes control of each sport. In this case, the Russians have appointed three of their own countrymen headed by well-known skating coach. Given reason 1 and 2, it is not surprising that the last-second goal could have been voted 3-1 against. The American protest and subsequent appeal has so far failed to extract “… a clear explanation as to why the goal was counted…” (official US Deaflympic media)
4. RUSSIANS DON’T DO COMPROMISE
According to the USA Deaflympic news reports, there have now been several days since the controversial result was made for officials to have made a correction. Either to have the two teas plan an overtime period, or just agree to a 5-5 tie. Sorry guys, that isn’t going to happen. This is the Russians you are dealing with.
5. RUSSIANS DO CORRUPTION AND CHEATING – IT IS BUSINESS AS USUAL
The Russian Deaf Sports Federation has been found guilty by a court of Law of falsifying an athlete’s audiogram to discredit him. The ICSD Congress has voted to ignore this and carry on. This is normal behaviour from Russians when it comes to participating internationally in sport and foreign policy, as the next two reasons will show:
6. DOPING IN SPORT IS A RUSSIAN NORM
The IAAF is struggling to find real evidence of doping amongst the ranks of Russian athletics. Good luck, it does not have the resources against the Russian system. The same goes for the ICSD, and the audiogram ‘doping’. And;
7. RUSSIAN TACTIC: DENIAL, DENIAL, DENIAL
When Russia invaded the Ukraine, they denied accusations that they had sent in their own troops to take control. When they had control of the Crimea, they clarified that “volunteers” had crossed the border. When faced with the clear evidence of audiogram fraud, they have remained silent and taken advantage of ICSD amateurism and distrust amongst nations to shield themselves from having to come clean.
8. IF THE RUSSIAN’S DON’T LIKE YOU…
One day you will be minding your own business, crossing a bridge and you will get shot from behind.
9. RUSSIANS BLAME OTHER PEOPLE:
- The invasion of the Ukraine was not their fault
- Shooting political activists is not their fault
- Campaigning to overrule the early cancelation of the 2011 Winter Deaflympics, and then blaming others when it all fell apart is not their fault.
- Concerns about audiogram cheating is just ‘sour grapes’
10. RUSSIANS TAKE CREDIT WHERE IT IS NOT DUE:
- Contemporary recognition from IOC is not down to Rukhledev, it is thanks to Crowley’s diplomacy (2009-2013)
- The concept of the International Deaflympic Committee is not Rukhledev’s idea. It was created during Ammons’ residency (pre 2009).
- Russians have not contributed any beneficial actions to safeguard ICSD or the Deaflympics.
The world should not be surprised then, that the Russians have never been given the opportunity to lead, in any shape or form, a multinational sport federation, commercial entity or geopolitical organisation that includes Western nations. The ICSD Presidency has been a gift to the Russians to practice their imperialism and anti-IOC agenda.
A pity then that Russia has not taken the greatest opportunity to demonstrate good practice by ensuring that the Protest Committee of the ICSD Deaflympic Ice Hockey tournament was multi-national. Something that was well within their means to achieve to ensure that Olympic-level sports governance is transparent. Instead, they have chosen to play the game their way and have done the Deaflympic movement a further disservice by creating further controversy.