Video: Islanders Prospect Ville Pokka on receiving end of dirty WJC hit

Pokka was the Islanders' 2nd-round, 34th overall pick in 2012. - Bruce Bennett

The hit was not only late and foolish, but it may have cost Switzerland their best shot at reaching the medal round.

New York Islanders prospect Ville Pokka was at the center of controversy at the 2013 World Junior Hockey Championship, but it's not the kind you want to see.

Pokka was on the receiving end of a late and dirty shoulder to the head in Finland's match with Switzerland. As you can see from the video below, the hit by Lukas Sieber is clearly after the whistle and a headshot to an unsuspecting Pokka, who played to but not beyond the whistle. In a word, dirty and stupid.


Fortunately for Pokka, he played multiple shifts after the hit and appeared only to get cut, but not concussed, on the play.

Unfortunately for Switzerland, which led 4-2 at the time with just over eight minutes left in regulation, Finland scored on the ensuing powerplay and in fact tied the game to force overtime. Finland then won the game in a shootout, leaving Switzerland with just one point from the game when they were just minutes away from securing all three*.

As a result, instead of being in great position to advance to the medal round, Switzerland is now at risk of dropping to the relegation round depending on its final match against the Czech Republic.

*Yes, in international hockey, all games are worth the same amount of points, and are divided up among the two combatants accordingly. What a novel concept!

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