Saturday, November 15, 2008

Chelios calls out refereeing for what it is

From an interview at Snapshots (Tip to Paul Kukla):

Bob Wojnowski: Now Cheli, not to get you in trouble at all, but I've heard more and more talk from, like broadcasters and their players, that they're going to...When a team is behind in the NHL these days, they're automatically going to start getting power plays. Is that like, more than ever before, does it seem that way, kinda?

Chris Chelios: Well, it's like I said, it's the "New NHL," they want scoring, they're supervising these referees...And, I mean, just compare it to basketball; how many times do you see a team get in foul trouble, you know, once they get up a bit? It's almost like it's controlled to a certain extent by the referees, the officiating, and the supervisors, so...I mean, it's not like they're keeping it a secret--they're telling the referees to call penalties, so...You can all a penalty, or, you know, a foul in basketball pretty much every time they come down the court, football, same thing, any contact sport, it's open for criticism, you know, on the officiating, so they're doing what they're told, and I think, I look back to the Pittsburgh game, you know, even though we did blow it in the third period, they did give them that five-on-three and little momentum, and a nothing call to make it a five on three, which...

Like I said, is it a penalty? Yeah, sometimes it is, but so many times you see it's not called. To not beat around the bush and answer your question, I think it's controlled.

Wojo: It seems that way, it does!

Chelios: Well, it does, let's just call a spade a spade, right?. They watch scoring, and if it's good for the fans and good for the game, so be it, you know...Is it fair? What's fair anymore?
Finally a player calls bull shit on the current state of affairs with NHL refereeing. Chelios knows first hand, and ironically he's seen it happen mostly with the Penguins. If it had not been for the shady officiating in the previous Penguins-Wings game (which he alluded to), the Wings would have won. Even worse: Had the officiating not been so suspect in last year's Stanley Cup Finals, the Wings could have beaten the Penguins in 4 or 5 games. Hell, the Penguins almost pushed the series to 7 games after a late call in Game 6. Hossa shot the puck along the goal line and did not score, preserving a Wings' Cup win. Thank god the Penguins didn't win another.
I don't know who is telling the refs to do this horse shit but it is tarnishing the game, and it needs to stop. I'm willing to say that I'd rather see some (or most) of these obstruction calls taken out of the game in order to avoid this current joke.
Can you count how many obstruction calls you've seen this year that were bunk? These blown calls sway games intentionally or not. Players feel an opposing player's stick on their leg or waist and dive to create calls. If the hook doesn't impede the player's progress it shouldn't be called.
I know the NHL wants goal totals to go up, but there are better ways of going about it. Turning the game into soccer shouldn't be one of them. Making the nets bigger is not one of them. Decreasing goalie equipment is. And if that doesn't work..well...fuck it! Then there are less goals per game.
This not the pure NHL that I grew up watching. No, this is a joke. And it isn't going to stop until more people come forward. Bless Chelios' red and white heart for "calling a spade a spade" and damn those who oppose.

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2 Comments:

At November 16, 2008 at 7:21 p.m. , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Finally a player speaks up about this. I was pretty sick of the blatant calls in favor of Pittsburgh during the finals. Everyone in the NHL is so busy fellating the Pens and especially Crosby when Crosby isn't even in the same league as many HOF players. If anything, he's a play maker, he isn't some goal scoring 2nd coming Gretzky.

I understand the need to get more viewers, but bunk calls is not the way to do it. In the finals Homer got called for goalie interference when he was barely in the crease, the Pens vs Wings game this past week, someone from the Pens, I can't remember who was completely in the crease and no call, the goal was allowed. It's things like that, that really irk me about how the NHL is handling certain issues. I know there's a lot of Wings hate in the hockey world, but come on, if a team is good, they're gonna win, it's just that simple. Weather it's the Sharks, the Pens, the Wings, the Rangers, who ever it may be, but there shouldn't be shoddy calls that makes or breaks a game night after night.

 
At November 17, 2008 at 1:05 a.m. , Blogger Sean Zandberg said...

You said that right. I'm a Wings hater and yet I feel bad for them over this matter.

I was watching a bunch more shitty calls during the Habs-Blues game this afternoon as well. Jesus. Pathetic.

 

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Waiting For Stanley was created in June 2006.