Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Patrick Hoffman on 11/25/11 at 06:00 PM ET
From Kerry Fraser at TSN.ca:
Throughout my career I was called into many games like the recent Bruins-Sabres rematch where bad blood was still brewing from a previous incident or even a brawl. I loved the excitement and the challenge of being pressed into inaction for these types of encounters. One such assignment change involved the Boston Bruins and the Hartford Whalers.
I was at home in Sarnia, Ontario with a very rare weekend off. Early Sunday morning, I was abruptly awakened from a sound sleep by a telephone call from Director of Officiating John McCauley. In typical McCauley fashion he said, “Hey Big Guy (an oxymoron to say the least), wake up - I need you to catch a plane to Hartford for a game tonight.”
I thought that one of my colleagues must have been injured the night before for John to assign me to a game on such short notice. My thought in this regard was reinforced by the fact that John attempted to give each one of his officials the very occasional weekend at home during the season and would only alter it if there was an emergency. John obviously thought it was an emergency; not through injury however but a call to arms!
McCauley went on to tell me that Boston and Harford had played the night before in the Garden and it had resulted in a real mess. Full line brawls and excessive stick related incidents erupted throughout the game. The real storyline (and need for me to go to Hartford for the rematch McCauley lamented) was because of the telephone calls he had received immediately after the game from both teams’ general managers and coaches complaining how horrible the referee had been in that game. According to both sides, it is a small miracle that none of their players were injured, maimed or killed!
Click here for more great stories from former NHL officiating great Kerry Fraser.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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