The NHL has stepped in on the Tim Peel situation and announced the veteran official has been barred from officiating future NHL games. Peel was caught on a hot mic during the Nashville Predators game against the Detroit Red Wings last night talking about wanting to give the Predators a call early.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) March 24, 2021
Tim Peel Barred From NHL Officiating Job
Tim Peel had officiated over 1,300 games prior to last night’s incident. Born in Hampton, New Brunswick, the 53-year-old official has been officiating some of the most important games. Since his first game as a referee back in 1999, Peel has appeared in 90 playoff games. He has also officiated the 2014 Sochi Olympics, two Winter Classics, and the All-Star game in 2012.
The incident last night was a shock to many fans watching the game. Hearing an official, whose job it is to call fair penalties and enforce the rulebook, even mentioning making a call for no reason is against the integrity of the game. The controversy lies not in the fact that he was caught saying it, rather that it seems to be systemic. If one official, an official who has seen his fair share of games, thinks this way then there is no doubt others do too. The idea of a “make-up call” as it seems that Peel was referring too isn’t a new thing. Referees at all levels of the game are aware of what they are and what their purpose is, loosely. However for an NHL official to be caught saying it is a direct violation of referees’ credibility around the league.
What This Means for Future Games
This likely won’t cause any change in the rulebook or a series of firings. Each official has their own interpretation of what they call the “standard of play”. It’s what officials use to decide whether or not they should allow play to continue or not if something violates the rulebook. Tim Peel might have felt that a call went uncalled earlier but that a softer one would have adhered to his interpretation of the standard of play. Wes McCauley, on the other hand, might have called both instances. All in all nothing drastic will change for how penalties are called, assessed, and looked at by officials.
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