A few thoughts on the officiating

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Many of you have strong opinions about the poor officiating of late, and have also taken issue with my reluctance to take a hard stance on it.

Let’s be clear that I think the officiating in this series has been inconistent at best, and one-sided at worst. I personally think this is less a deep-rooted conspiracy against the Rangers and is more a reflection on individuals — Jaromir Jagr, Sean Avery, maybe even Brendan Shanahan — who are unlikely to get the benefit of the doubt during games.

Either way, it’s a gray area, and I’m just glad that I didn’t have to write a story yesterday about the Rangers pointing to some questionable calls as the reason they lost. Because that surely would have been the case had the game gone the other way. And no matter how strong their case may have been — and yesterday, it definitely was — it still would have sounded like whining.

Instead, the Rangers prevailed, and can at least hope they’ll get a better shake starting tomorrow.

*****************************************************

One other item on the agenda is Kevin Weekes. Many of you have asked about his status, and the only reason I haven’t filled you in more is because there’s nothing major to report. Weekes is with the team and practicing on a regular basis.

The only reason he is behind Stephen Valiquette on the depth chart right now is that Valiquette has been active this whole time while Weekes hasn’t seen a live puck in 2007. That said, it’s not like Valiquette has been worn thin either, so you wonder if those two might trade spots in the coming days.

More later…

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54 Comments

  1. Sam it’s in the NHL’s interest to help the all poor $ teams, just hard to prove. But there’s plenty of ammunition.

  2. So whine away, then! Lindy Ruff whines and the league listens to him. The Rangers keep quiet when they get shafted, and the result is they continue to get shafted.

  3. whining about officiating in loser talk (islanders). we are better then that. as long as they keep skating, play hard and maintain puck possession we will get the calls.

  4. Slight correction, Weekes started Jan 11th vs Ottawa. That aside I think most fans would a lot more comfortable with Kevin as the backup instead of Valiquette right now; the deeper we get into the playoffs the more experience we could use.

  5. “I personally think this is less a deep-rooted conspiracy against the Rangers and is more a reflection on individuals—Jaromir Jagr, Sean Avery, maybe even Brendan Shanahan—who are unlikely to get the benefit of the doubt during games.”

    ************************************************************

    This hits the nail right on the head . . . and I can certainly see why this might be the case with Avery, but for the life of me I can’t understand why the refs, almost to a man, continue to refuse to enforce the “new NHL rules” when Jagr is being impeded, as they do for other teams best skilled players. It’s become a bad joke.

    As for the no goal call from Toronto, has there been any further official explanation from the league for such a ridiculously bad call???

  6. Sam, lets be clear….our job does not hinge on a healthy relationship with the NHL, as does yours. We are free to call it as we see it (and call it we have!), and you are not.

    Doesn’t that say it all?

  7. But listen, we’ve been talking about NOT complaining about the officiating all year. And it’s gotten us nowhere. We still get the short end of the whistle EVERY game.

    You can say “let’s not complain and it will all work out.” Come back to reality for a second. It’s not working out. That game yesterday could have very easily gone to the Sabres, and it would have been because of the crap calls/non-calls.

    You can say “let’s not complain” all you want, but at some point you have to see the obvious. How many more blown calls are you willing to bend over and take as fans before you get angry? I’m not sure if it’s just the Rangers, because it’s been a problem league-wide. I’m more inclined to believe that it’s the league’s way of giving smaller-market teams an edge.

    When we make the claim that refs are biased, you get people who immediately say “that’s wrong. It’s the number 1 market, of course they want the Rangers to win.” Well, I’ve got news for you. New York is NOT the number one market for hockey. In everything else, yes. But not in hockey. Sam will back me up on this. He, like me, works in media. I don’t get to cover the Rangers daily, but I do write sports fairly regularly. It annoys me when hockey coverage gets killed, but it does. This is not the #1 market for our sport.

  8. Avery Blasts Brodeur on

    QUESTION: Why is game 4 on Tuesday and Game 5 not until Friday? Why the 2 days off? What is the NHL’s reasoning for this idiotic scheduling?

  9. Question: “What is the NHL’s reasoning for this idiotic scheduling?”

    Answer: Versus

  10. What amazes me about the officiating (or lack of it, because what those “officials” are doing should never be confused with actual officiating)is that the calls are going against the biggest television market in the NHL. Do they actually think that a Buffalo-Ottawa series is going to draw as many fans as a New York-New Jersey series??
    The refereeing situation not only in this series, but in the entire NHL is seriously corrupt, and absolutely needs to be addressed this off-season. Seriously, how many calls this year have been ignored by the official closest to the play, but made by an official standing 30 feet away?

  11. I stand corrected on Weekes.

    Meanwhile, if you think my reluctance to criticize the referees or the NHL is for fear of repercussions, I’m not sure whether to laugh or be insulted. For one thing, I couldn’t care less about whether they take offense to criticism. As I said, the officiating has definitely been a problem. But for another, I doubt Gary Bettman or Bill Daly is scouring my blog looking for slights in order to deny me access.

    Sam

  12. bklynblue – I know for a fact that it’s not in the NHL’s best interested to support poor $ teams. It’s better for the NHL to have a major market continue on tv for higher national tv ratings and they get a biggger cut of shared revenue from the richer teams.

    It’s more the Jagr/Avery thing than the league being against the rangers.

    And don’t forget, Lindy Ruff is a whining sack of **** who got fined after game two for running his mouth. I’m sure that has something to do with them getting some of the calls.

  13. NY probably is the #1 market for hockey (at least those teams that are left), maybe not as a percentage of ratings, but overall numbers. Aside from Collie’s kid playing for Buffalo (probably the only skater of late who’s gone from playing at RCDS to the NHL rather than NHL to Sam’s linemate) if the NHL were smart, they’d be doing everything in their power to keep the Rangers going.

    As bad as many of the calls or non-calls were, the Rangers did get a few calls in overtime which were surprising (because there were calls). There isn’t another market other than LA/Anaheim which will get the NHL on late-night programs and media coverage outside of the local market. Buffalo has less than 300k people. NJ, a bigger percentage of the population of Buffalo cares about them circling the parking lot than in NY. Canadians will love hockey even if they don’t have any more pro teams. Then there’s Detroit, a great hockey town, but still no huge population and the town itself stinks (as does the job situation), it’s the suburbs that are nice. But the close to 4 million people are the only contender with NY for people who may care.

    Anyway, after the Rangers won, they were all over the news and TV. Anaheim went on Kimmel because the goalie had a funny name. No one else is going to give the NHL press in the states.

  14. Maybe the refs are overcompensating because if calls go the Rangers’ way, they will automatically be criticized for favorable bias towards the big city.

    If Weekes is practicing with the team, it doesn’t really matter who the backup is. If Lundqvist is coming out of a game, the game is already lost or he is hurt. I doubt either backup goaltender would do well at that point because neither has played in a while and Valiquette has only play a few games in his NHL career. If a backup has to start a game, they’ll probably just bring in Weekes. As long as he’s with the team, it’s no big big deal.

    Every series is scheduled for two off days in a row, probably because they need to fill up the time before the conference finals start. Also, it keeps the Rangers and Red Wings series on the same weekend days on NBC.

  15. EB – Which goalie went on Kimmel? JS Giguere, I presume? Could have been Bryzgalov; they both have foreigny names.

  16. Giguere. They liked getting Giggy with it. They were on before it was all over too. Nothing against Kimmel, I love it, but it isn’t the ratings of Letterman and Stuttering John.

  17. The officials’ bias against the Rangers is not due to Avery, or Jagr, or Shanahan. It is a bias against New York by small-minded Canadian individuals who see New York as a symbol of the US trying to gain control of “their” sport.

    I’ve been a fan of the Rangers since 1970 and the bias has been there without fail throughout those 37 years, regardless of personnel on the team.

    Case in point: During the ’94 Cup year, there was a game between the Rangers and Anaheim. The Rangers had the best record in the league at the time. And yet, they were 0-6 when Paul Stewart reffed the game (Stewart was known to hate the Rangers for their treatment of him while he was a player).

    Strangely enough, Anaheim was 0-5 with Stewart reffing. So the joke was that Stewart would be pissed because one of his hated teams would have to win. The Rangers actually won that one.

    This is just a small example of the type of biased thinking
    prevalent in hockey. Colin Campbell is known to have a grudge against the Rangers since they fired him as a coach. Yesterday’s no-goal call was undoubtedly influenced by Campbell to shaft the Rangers. There is no possible way that goal should have been overruled. That one is grounds for a corruption probe.

    The NHL will never reach “major sport” status as long as personal bias and crooked people are in charge.

    They’d rather that hockey remain a small-time sport based in Canada, than a major sport which is controlled in any way by the US.

  18. Not getting the benefit of the doubt extends beyond your short list, as far as the Rangers are concerned.

    I simply cannot understand how anyone could refuse to take a “hard stance” after last night. Your brief explanation about specific personnel doesn’t pass muster either; although it is certainly true it is not an exhaustive theory. With a league that turns in that kind of officiating performance, in the biggest media market in the world, a league that dissuades and punishes criticism from the inside, it is not such a stretch for the public to assume that they patrol media as well. If you are insulted or tickled by that, maybe you should step back and consider what your words look like in this context (i.e. after last night). Such blatant conspiratorial penalty-calling opens up room for any speculation, to my mind. Tony Stewart and his merry band of flagwaving NASCAR officials have nothing on the NHL, after last night.

    Insulted and amused is how we are all feeling after last night Sam. Its the officiating, and not my posting, that makes it such.

  19. And the Sabres have the best selling merchandise in the league. Attribute it to the bandwagon, fine, but Sabres hockey has been a cash cow this season.

  20. Sam, doesn’t the league review the officials performance in the playoffs? It is hard to watch.

  21. I suspect that Buffalo may have a higher percentages of TVs watching hockey, but the number of NYers watching, as a pure amount, has got to be higher. There just isn’t enough people in Buffalo to match up.

    Regardless, I watched Sportscenter last night and had to wait over 50 minutes from the start of the show to see hockey coverage. This with a Double OT win by the team that plays in the world’s greatest arena in the capital of the world. Obviously NY winning doesn’t make a difference to the national media. Hockey has become, once again, a niche sport. And I suspect that’s fine to some of the Canadian officials and refs.

    Not that there is an overt conspiracy, but an inate tendency to mistreat NYC as the symbol of carpetbagging to “real” hockey fans, players, etc. Don’t you know that the “true north, strong and free,” is “standing on guard” for their sport?

  22. baron34, I think you’re deluding yourself in thinking that there isn’t corruption in the other leagues. You may not pay attention to it or be aware of it, but if it exists in the NHL, you can be sure it is there elsewhere.

  23. Chris F. Screw sportcenter, just go to espn.com and click on what you want to watch. Hell of a lot quicker to get to what you want to see. Presumably you have a computer.

  24. EB:

    Yes, without a doubt there is corruption in the other sports also… but they cannot be so blatant and “in-your-face” in their actions. There is a lot more scrutiny by the media, and
    a lot more hell to pay if they are caught at it.

    Apparently the NHL refs and the NHL league offices are on the same page, with no repercussions when the Rangers are being screwed.

    Any time money is being bet on a sport, there is the potential for corruption. What every sport needs is a Kennesaw Mountain Landis to ride shotgun on integrity.

  25. Sam, as you know from correspondence I am the managing editor of a global news publication, so here is an assignment that you can take (or leave, obviously): Who (name names) was in the box making the decision about the goal? What are their qualifications? What do they cite as their evidence for seeing a distinct kicking motion? Will any of them be discliplined for making such a horrible call?

    I think a lot of Ranger fans would appreciate answers.

  26. nycww where are you getting those facts from? espn has signed on to do some games next year. NY may or maynot be be their biggest market for TV, I would think more Canadians watch than Americans and I doubt they’re looking for the NYR, original 6 or not. So bring out your facts.

  27. Matt, you couldn’t be more wrong about the ratings. Buffalo has the highest ratings because nobody outside of Buffalo or the Northern State get Buffalo feeds. All of NYC and pretty much Long Island, and New Jersey get Ranger feeds. Ratings are based on how many people watch out of possible viewers. When your population is miniscule compared to the Rangers area, of course your ratings are greater. Simply stated, more people watch the New York Rangers, than the Buffalo Sabres.

  28. EB:

    Yeah, I hear you. But obviously I knew what had happened having watched the game. And I had read espn.com, and this web site. I just wanted to see it again AND also see the other crap (that is, baseball, basketball and the NFL draft). I just couldn’t believe it took 50 minutes of before they addressed a double OT win. Actually, I could. Which is what is so sad for the sport.

    Yeah, pf, who does man that video booth?

  29. Correct wook. Furthermore, while the New York City area has to deal with competition from the Yankees, Mets and so on… what other sports teams can Buffalo cheer for right now? It’s quite obvious that the Buffalo area has “Sabres fever” right now, and this shows in the high ratings, but that does not mean there are more Sabres fans than Rangers fans.

  30. Sam,
    For the life of me I don’t why there would be a bias against Jagr. To set the record, he is not one of my favorite players, but unlike other players, he has taken the double standard and never complained about it. Exactly what did the man do to deserve the treatment he is getting from the refs? He is not a known diver. Granted, yesterday’s OT might have been one of the few times I have seen him dive. Does he whine on the subject behind the scenes? Please expand on it.
    Avery ran his mouth before the series started, so there is probably something there that the league doesn’t like about him.
    I think it was after the Caps game that Shanahan blasted the refs. So I guess the league doesn’t like to be called on the carpet.

  31. You guys are also forgetting a very important stat – that’s how many people nationwide tune in to watch a Ranger game that’s nationally televised versus a Buffalo-Ottawa game. I don’t know what those numbers are, but I’d have to guess they’re much higher when the Rangers are playing simply by virtue of the fact that the Rangers are an original six team that has been around a lot longer and therefore have transplanted fans all over the country who tune in. That’s the reason why it’s good when all the original six teams do well. Buffalo may do great in Buffalo, but they’re not even the most well-known hockey team in this state. And if Buffalo is such a great hockey market, why don’t they put another team there? There are 3 around here, which is definitely one too many.

    Its best for the NHL for the Rangers to do well, pure and simple. It’s all an individual thing – ie the individuals involved in making the calls and running the games, etc, all hate the Rangers. They don’t care about the good of the league.

  32. Matt
    April 30th, 2007 at 11:23 am
    Buffalo gets better TV ratings than the NYC market.

    What else does Buffalo have? Yankees, Mets? Nope no Professional Baseball in Buffalo.

    Nets, Devils, Islanders all in the playoffs – Nope just the Sluggs –

    So what is your point? If you add up all of those distractions, who has the better ratings??

  33. I think there are alot of assumptions in what buttman thinks and does. This guy has his own agenda, and is trying to keep 30 owners happy & making $. I don’t think he’s worried about the NYR as much as other teams. Just look at what he’s done for Pittsburgh.

  34. pf if Sam doesn’t take your offer, try to get some other reporter to do it. It needs to be addresssed.

  35. bklynblue–really its only in the best interest of the league for small market teams to win IF you are only concerned with the lowest common denominator and are only concerned with all 30 franchise surviving no matter or what impact it might have on the remaining franchise, both of which are clearly part of gary bettman’s agenda.

    if buffalo wins that is great for them, and i guess you could argue it as a positive sign for other teams in similar situation. but for the league as a whole how does that help ny, nj, det, col, phi, dal, etc?? whereas if the rangers win it means more viewers, higher ratings which could result in better tv deal, etc. a red wings/rangers finals would generate a LOT more interest and revenue then an anaheim/buffalo final would. so if the 2 big market teams would mean more $$ for the league as a whole, i don’t see how the league as a whole benefits more from the smaller market teams winning.

  36. I agree Bklyn – would love to hear the explanation for the call and see the face of the incompentent fool who was responisble for it

  37. Some NHL War Room Staff (titles are sketchy):

    -Colin Campbell, NHL Director of Operations

    -Mike Murphy, NHL V.P. of Operations

    -Andy Van Hellemond, Director of Officiating

    -E.J. McGuire, former Wolfpack Head coach, is also one of the War Room regulars.

    They are based out of the NHL Head Office in Toronto.

  38. on comparing the tv ratings in buffalo vs nyc, 2 things to keep in mind.

    1)buffalo practically shares a tv market with toronto. they get the canadian feeds for tsn and part of their market are people living in canada. everyone knows that ratings in canada are higher then the us, so you are skewing the numbers by viewing a market that contains both us and canadian viewers.

    2)ratings are based on viewers/household. nyc has a lot more households which means they need to have a lot more viewers to get the same rating…nyc would need approximately 8 times as many viewers to get the same rating. so you could easily have a high % in buffalo, but a high quantity in nyc.

  39. I am sure everyone saw the linesman chewing out Avery for a good 30 seconds before he dropped the puck. Can you honestly tell me that that linesman was being objective? No way. About a week ago, did anyone see when Tim Duncan got thrown out of the game for laughing at the ref? That ref got suspended for the rest of the season. It is clear that refs in pro sports have biases against certain players and teams. It is just human nature.

    This starts my rant on the refereeing that we are witnessing. OK, maybe the refs missed a few (2 or 3) penalties on the Rangers yesterday. That is, the Rangers might have had infractions that did not get called. But there were at least 7-8 that occurred against them that were not called. It seems to me that Buffalo gets the Sidney Crosby treatment with the refs.

    The goal that was disallowed is the first thing I will bring up. Was it a kicking motion? Hardly. If Rachy doesn’t try and slow up, he crashes into Miller and there is either a brawl or a penalty on Rachy and/or “no goal”. He put on the brakes and while he was slowing/stopping, the puck hits his skate. He did not try and redirect the puck. His skate kept the same plane it was on the entire time.

    Let’s look further…Why wasn’t Rachy able to hit it with his stick? Because he was being hooked or held or both, on his way to the net. In either case, there should have been a penalty. They looked at it enough on the replay to show that his stick was being interfered with. If they are going to review on whether it was a goal or not, they should be able to review what prevented the player from using his stick. The same way if there is a penalty on the way to an open net goal, they award the goal.

    What was the real difference between the Buffalo 4th goal in game 1 where the guy hit it off his hand? Not much really. The motion of the play knocked the puck in.

    I just see huge inconsistencies in the refereeing and the judgment used. The Rangers have been on the short end of the stick. I can’t help but think there is a lot of anti-Ranger sentiment out there. And like it or not, it has to pervade the refs’ minds at least a little.

    Enough on this.

    The Blueshirts have outplayed the Sabres the last two games. Yes Lundqvist stood on his head at times, but the Rangers are playing good hockey. On Friday night, Malik and Rachunek cost us the game. Malik makes a dumb pass and it’s tied. Rachunek tries to line up the dude (Campbell?), totally misses, and Campbell ends up getting the 2nd assist on the goal. If Rachy drops him, he does not get up to make that play. (How the hell he can make that run at him and miss by that much is just beyond me?) But the Rangers had their chances in that game with about 5 odd-man rushes that they were unable to convert on (Cullen, Mara, Jagr).

    Finally yesterday we outplayed them most of the game. Again we took too many penalties (thanks refs…what game are they watching? I addressed this above!) but we were able to hold them off.

    I like Isbister in there for Hollweg, he gives us more dimension in the O zone. Ortmeyer is OK I guess. But I am saying this now as I have done before, Ortmeyer is either in Hartford or somewhere else next season. Same with Hollweg.

    I am so pumped for tomorrow night. More of the same that we have seen for most of Friday night and all of yesterday and we might just be able to tie this series up!

  40. The city of Buffalo may have more people watching hockey, because they have fewer distractions, I’ll give you that. However, how many Rangers fans are watching in Florida, the Carolinas, etc.? Ever go to or even listen to a Tampa Bay or Florida game when the Rangers are playing? There are probably more Rangers fans there than Lightning or Panthers fans. Plus, the Rangers are an Original Six team. Isn’t the NHL constantly trying to push the revival of Original Six teams? This is my point…I can’t understand why all these calls are going against the Rangers. Any word of memos or further explanations this afternoon, Sam?

    I read somewhere that Damian Echavarrieta, (I probably spelled that wrong, I apologize)who is one of the “war room” video guys in Toronto, said that the goal was disallowed because pucks are not supposed to be scored by going in off skates. That’s not a direct quote, because of course, I can’t remember where I read that now, but he said nothing about a “distinct kicking motion” which is the actual rule. I’d like to hear him explain the difference between a distinct kicking motion and a distinct stopping motion, which is what I actually saw.

  41. Doodie Machetto on

    To those who think Lindy’s whining got them the calls? Remember earlier in the season when Sahnny complained and then we had like 10+ penalties called on us the next game? Complaining does not help, it just makes you a target for the refs.

    As for the distinct kicking motion: watch it in slow motion. When he is trying to stop, his skate doesn’t glide, but rather stutters. Those stutters look like kicks. Now, knowing how hard it is to stop sometimes when someone is on your back, I know it is just his skate jutting in the ice. But it could be looked at as kicking. The call sucks, but it’s not like there wasn’t *any* justification for it. It doesn’t have to be a kick like the one the ref did to indicate it was a goal. Remember Cullen’s backheel earlier in the season? No doubt about that being a kick. Misconstruing the skate jutting, it looks like Rachunek tried to kick it with the inside of his skate. Of course, you have to be pretty dumb to misconstrue it, because there were several in a row, but looking at just one, it would look like a distinct kicking motion.

  42. Chris F

    I was talking about just watching the video feeds on espn.com. At work we can’t get youtube etc, but espn.com is ok. So I watch whatever highlights there, and you can just bounce ahead to either the hockey section, or through the normal section. I’ve heard they have stories there, but I’ve never read them.

  43. RangrGirl11:

    I believe the quote you are referring to was from the daily news.

    http://tinyurl.com/2fcxrk

    “The puck didn’t deflect off Rachunek’s skate and in. The pass from Hossa hit Rachunek in the skate … then … Rachunek propels the puck in with his skate,” NHL video director Damian Echevarrieta explained. “You can’t score a goal with your skate unless it hits you in the skate and goes in based on the momentum of the shot or pass. You can’t propel the puck in with your skate.”

  44. DanTheRangerFan on

    The officiating gas been piss poor all season and throughout the playoffs. This last game just puts it over the edge for me…Especially after Toronto doesent go by the rules they created and bangs the Rangers on purpose.

  45. Can someone point me to the comments that Renney made about fans getting on Malik? I mean I read somewhere that Renney called it “disappointing,” but I was looking for more? A link or something? I gotta see what Renney said…

  46. I think officiating in last game should be addressed, no doubt. Why should we just keep our mouths shut? That was as bad as it could get. That was RIDICULOUS and UNFAIR.

  47. Steve Rucchin on

    It has been apparent since the Islander series that the NHL wants Buffalo to win the Cup – on-ice officials and league officials.

    Why? I don’t know. To push this small-market stuff?

  48. http://www.buffalonews.com/214/story/65140.html

    Newman

    whole article attached via link – the MAlik part pasted below.

    Rangers defenseman Marek Malik, the goat in Game Two who threw the puck away in the Rangers zone to allow the Sabres to tie the game in the third period, was booed by the Madison Square Garden faithful every time he touched the puck early in Game Three.

    Malik drew the crowd’s ire again with 9:12 left in the first overtime, when was penalized for hooking Thomas Vanek. The Sabres didn’t register a shot on the power play, saving Malik from further howls.

    “It’s disappointing,� Renney said of the fans’ treatment. “I understand mistakes are made out there. Sometimes, as games are chronicled over the airwaves, too, we invite those problems for players. And that’s not fair.

    “Marek is a hell of a teammate, and he’s a great, great man. He’s one of those guys that if you could pick your neighbors to live beside you he’d probably be one of them. He cares about everybody and everything. He’s laying it on the line. His teammates appreciate him, and at the end of the day that’s the most important thing.�

  49. I’ve been watching hockey my entire life (33 years old now) and I’ve never seen a more blatant display of one-sided officiating as I did in game 3. Bad calls going against the Rangers (Jagr’s tripping call where he played the puck and the defender stepped on his stick and fell)

    Non-calls on blatant penalties made by the Sabres (Jagr is constantly interferred with, hooked, held, and roughed without a call. It should be the other way arround. (see Sydney Crosby) Also, a Sabre defenseman falls on the puck in front of his net and gets a stopage without penalty (I think it was in OT and the Rangers were on a rare powerplay)

    But the dissallowed goal… that was the worst. Where in that replay anyone could make an argument for seeing a “DISTINCT” kicking motion is completely ridiculous.

    It all screams of some sort of bias. What that bias is I have no idea or why.

    That game left me feeling like I had just watched a one-sided boxing match with the clear winner robbed by the judges. I know the Rangers won, but it felt that fixed to me. I also know that whinning about officials is useless and usually the fodder of losers… but should we really wait until the refs hand the Sabres the series to call them out?

    I don’t know how much longer I can stand up for this sport and this league to all the people who call it “rinky dink” and “smalltime”. I just don’t know.

  50. RangersIn7 on

    I agree that was one of the worst-officiated games I have ever seen. My favorite moment was when the official made the dramatic kicking motion. Thanks jackass, I really wanted to see an example of what didn’t happen on the play. I wish I received a $200k/yr salary to make up crap and ignore anything I wanted all day. It’s sad to see the outcome of the best game in the world played by 40 incredibly skilled millionaires decided by 2 incompetent losers who weren’t good enough to play the sport themselves.

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