Veggiato was expelled from the rink and will serve a five-game suspension for upcoming league games. He apologized to Zandonella after the game but the punishment will not be withdrawn, said Franz Sinn, head of the federation's hockey section.
"We have already seen this kind of escalation in soccer and we cannot accept it," Sinn said.
Although hockey has a minor following in Italy, national media hailed the decision as being in sharp contrast with the way soccer officials have dealt with a recent string of racist outbursts in the country's most popular sport. Now if they'd just start applying these same rules to preachers of hate, maybe the Ancestors of Rome will survive.