This was the call last night that shook the hockey world. This was a horrible call by veteran NHL referee Stephen Walkom, because the actual penalty has no bearing on the goal that was being scored. Think about this, the Chicago Blackhawks scored the game winning goal in regulation only to have it taken away from them. I was watching the game at Parrot's Kay and I couldn't believe that they ref waved this goal off.
That's a goal.... Put it on the score board.
— Eric J. Burton (@goon48) May 30, 2013
First off, the officiating for whatever reason in the Chicago vs. Detroit series was absolutely brutal. Words like atrocious, brutal, unacceptable, disgusting, come to mind... I have never seen a series that was this poorly officiated, in a very long time. There is no excuse for this. Here's the good news, Stephen Walkom is going to officiate in the next round of the NHL playoffs. In the Army we used to have a saying, screw up, you move up.
This is the NHL, not the house league in Canada or the WCHA. This is the best hockey league in the world. The Stanley Cup Playoff games are the show case games and should have the best officials. The best of best officials should be officiating the show case games and the product on the ice, being the officials, should match the players on the ice.
The officiating in this series was suspect, and it was unacceptable and I would even use the word shoddy to explain the officiating as well. The NHL should be ashamed of itself and I do believe that they do have egg on their face. Where have we seen this before? Sound familiar? Today was a rich day for NHL hockey news.
Jim Diamond, Nashville Predators Examiner --- I have played in too many games where NHL officials are doing everything in their power to "even things out." No matter who's playing whom and no matter how they're playing, it was all too common for officials to attempt to mete out an equal number of minor penalties to each team. Meaning, going in to any given game, the men in black adopt the approach that the penalties taken by the visitors will, for the most part, equal the number of penalties taken by the home team. All is fair if everybody gets their fair share, right? (There's a socio-political point in there somewhere but that's subject matter for a different piece).
Seems reasonable, no? The penalties balance out and the players will sort it out from there, right? Not at all actually. The truth is there are many nights when one team simply outplays and outworks the other. That's a fairly straightforward truth; we've all seen it. And yet, even in a game like that, the guys in stripes are still attempting to balance out this ledger whereby one team gets the same number of power plays as the opposition.