Another round of playoff hockey, another round of cuts for the officiating team.
Gone are Brad Meier, Tom Kowal, Chris Lee, and Kevin Pollock. They join the referees cut after the first round – veteran Paul Devorski, Greg Kimmerly, Steve Kozari, Mike Leggo, Tim Peel, Brian Pochmara, Francois St. Laurent, and Kelly Sutherland – on the sidelines for the remainder of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Brad Meier’s seen the most action of this quartet of cuts. He’s overseen 810 regular season and 32 playoff games. His legacy in the 2013 postseason, though, will be on this goal that wasn’t.
@Panger40 with line of the night about Brad Meier quick whistle in San Jose on clear LA Goal. "It was a case of premature whistlelization"
— Craig Button (@CraigJButton) May 22, 2013
Tom Kowal – a 13-year veteran making just his second appearance in the playoffs – was not without his questionable calls as well, including this waved off goal from the second-round series between the Blackhawks and the Detroit Red Wings.
Boston announcer Jack Edwards also challenges Kowal’s interpretation of the rulebook after a phantom hooking call in the Bruins’ second-round series against the New York Rangers:
Hagelin falls down, clearly falling before contact, goes over Bartkowski's stick. Tom Kowal calls "tripping." Interesting interpretation.
— Jack Edwards (@RealJackEdwards) May 25, 2013
Kevin Pollock, the longest-tenured veteran of the cuts, has also seen his share of playoff games. He has 123 playoff games under his belt – eight this year – along with 816 regular season games. The 13-year veteran has his fans. This is not one of them:
Just hope that Dan O'Rourke and Kevin Pollock don't call the next two rounds of playoffs. Could be long and frustrating.
— Ian Altenbaugh (@IanAltenbaugh) May 25, 2013
Well, you’re 1-for-2, Ian. O’Rourke’s made it through to the next round.
Conference Finals Officiating Team
Officiating the conference finals will be Eric Furlatt, Marc Joannette, Wes McCauley, Dan O’Halloran, Dan O’Rourke, Chris Rooney, Stephen Walkom, and Brad Watson. The linesmen for the two matchups will be Steve Barton, Shane Heyer, Brad Kovachik, Jean Morin, Brian Murphy, Jonny Murray, Pierre Racicot and Jay Sharrers.
We’ll be previewing the officials for each game of the Conference Finals and the Stanley Cup Finals, looking at the officials’ previous results, tendencies, and of course any memorable moments from the regular season or playoffs to date.
Follow Josh on Twitter – @joshsmith29
Josh is a life-long hockey fan. He grew up as a fan of the New York Rangers, but thanks to their general mismanagement and years of mediocrity, has developed a great appreciation for every team across the league.
He’s been writing about hockey on various sites since 1995. In addition to his work at The Hockey Writers, he also keeps tabs on the referees over at ScoutingTheRefs.com.