Dan ORourke

Your New Jersey-Florida Game 7 officials are…


The referees for tonight’s Eastern Conference quarterfinal Game 7 between the Devils and Panthers are Dan O’Rourke (#9) and Chris Rooney (#5).

Working the lines will be Steve “Gangster of Love” Miller (#89) and Pierre “Red Light” Racicot (#65).


— Things to know about O’Rourke:

1) In February, he was embroiled in the “Erik Karlsson is a diver” incident.

2) He worked Game 1 of the Kings-Canucks series, which featured a questionable opening goal (Ryan Kesler jostled Jonathan Quick, Burrows scored), followed by Kesler getting a two-minute unsportsmanlike penalty for show-showering Quick. Of note, this game also featured Byron Bitz getting five and a game for boarding.

3) He worked Game 2 of the Phoenix-Chicago series, which saw a questionable goalie interference call on Jonathan Toews and a five-minute charging major/game misconduct to Andrew Shaw for running Mike Smith.

— Rooney’s claim to fame this postseason was working Game 1 of Detroit-Nashville, during which Wings head coach Mike Babcock said the following:

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— There’s not much to say about Miller and/or Racicot.

Instead, let’s watch Chris Rooney go down in YouTube lore!

Video: Flyers, Bolts confirm 3-on-3 OT is pretty much the greatest thing ever


Well, the NHL’s two new initiatives for ’15-16 seem to be going swimmingly.

Not long after Ottawa successfully made the second-ever coach’s challenge, fans got their first look at 3-on-3 overtime.

And what a look it was.

In the span of 137 seconds, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers combined for eight shots on goal, a few breakaways, some tremendous saves — including one on a penalty shot — and, finally, Jason Garrison‘s game-winning goal on a breakaway from center, giving the Bolts a 3-2 win.

It was, in a word, fun.

Lots of fun.

A quick sampling of reviews:

Of course, not everybody was a fan:

Now, to temper things a bit — this was the first time we’ve seen 3-on-3 with something on the line, so there was a novelty factor at play. There’s also no guaranteeing future OT sessions will be as exciting as this.

But none of that takes away from the fact 3-on-3 made for appointment viewing, and immense entertainment value. The prospect of future games like this? That’s pretty exciting.

In Jets return, Burmistrov delivers headshot to Bergeron (Updated)


Didn’t take long for Alex Burmistrov to make his presence felt — though not in a good way.

Burmistrov, playing in his first game for the Jets after a two-year stint in Russia, delivered a questionable elbow to the head of Boston’s Patrice Bergeron late in the first period of Thursday’s season-opener:

Burmistrov received a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, while Bergeron received a matching minor for roughing (retaliating for the elbow, specifically).

The Bruins went into the intermission leading 1-0, and have yet to update Bergeron’s status.

Update: Bergeron stayed in the game, but B’s head coach Claude Julien was none too pleased with the hit. Following the game, he called for the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to look at it…