On Make-up Calls


Yesterday I posted a bit to YahooGroup “redwing” and thought I’d expand on the idea here.

So the general consensous is that the disallowed Detroit goal in Game Four was a make-up call for when goalie interference probably should have been called on Tomas Holmstrom on Detroit’s third goal in Game One. Here’s where it gets messy…

The refs in Game One were Kevin Pollock and Bill McCreary. Neither of them were refs Wednesday night, which means that in order for it to be a make-up call then Kelly Sutherland would have either had to have decided to take it upon himself to make up for another ref’s mistake or he was ordered to by someone else.

This, to me, is absolutely unacceptable. I can understand a make-up call if it’s made by the same ref, in the same game, within a few minutes of the original call. Not the case here.

The problem is that the NHL always backs the refs. After Game One, no one in the league offices said that there was a problem with Detroit’s third goal. Now, after Game Four, Gary Bettman himself says that Sutherland made the right call.

You can’t have it both ways. One was right or one was wrong.

It’s because the NHL doesn’t admit that there are bad calls that makes it so you “have” to have make-up calls. There’s this ridiculous need to “fix” what happened.

Instead of calling make-up calls, start calling out officials. Acknowledge that they’re not perfect but that they work to be better. When an official makes a mistake, suspend them. Make this information public knowledge so that fans know the league is working to get better.

While this doesn’t fix the mistake that happens, it’s not all that different from suspending Jamie McLennan for slashing Johan Franzen when there was no chance the Red Wings were going to see McLennan again anyway.

We know the refs aren’t perfect but it’s ridiculous for the league to say that they are.


Clark founded the site that would become DetroitHockey.Net in September of 1996 with no idea what it would lead to. He continues to write for the site and executes the site's design and development.

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