Tag: Kerry Fraser

Hockey Hall Of Fame Legends Classic Game

Former ref would have allowed non-goal that drove Boudreau mad


In the grand scheme of things, the Anaheim Ducks are so far out of the West playoff picture that a disallowed goal against the Boston Bruins mattered most in that it absolutely drove Bruce Boudreau bonkers. (Angry Boudreau = entertained onlookers.)

TSN’s readers picked former official Kerry Fraser’s brain on the subject, who ultimately believes that the goal should have counted.

Fraser first stated that while contact in the crease isn’t the only standard for a disallowed goal, he had some qualms with the way rule 69.1 was set up:

When this mandate was imposed following the most recent GM meetings in Florida, I said that it would not work effectively. I provided what I thought was logical assumptions and referenced examples from game situations that had been ruled upon. One most obvious example as to why long distance calls seldom work came from a San Jose goal scored in OT that was disallowed by the back referee at the red line when he ruled incidental contact had been made with Calgary goalkeeper, Miikka Kiprusoff. The contact clearly came from Kipper’s own player Olli Jokinen and not Sharks forward Tommy Wingels as the ref suspected.

Given the depth perception that results when a linesman views the play from a distance as close as 65 feet or the other referee as far back as 95 feet at the red line it is unrealistic to expect a more accurate decision could be rendered than from the official on the goal line 15 feet away. There are often times the low ref does require accurate information to make this call as we have seen but it is unlikely to come through an on-ice conference as the mandate provides. Last night’s decision that resulted in a Ducks goal being disallowed is further evidence of this.

Even with the flaws of opening things up to human error in mind, Fraser said that he would have allowed the goal to stand, which was obviously not the case (to Boudreau’s chagrin).

Since Marty Turco was content with the position he assumed within his goal crease I would have allowed the goal to stand just like the referee on the goal line. In this case, with Anaheim 11 points out of a playoff spot it might appear as though it just water off a Duck’s back. Good luck trying to convince coach Bruce Boudreau of that!

So, hey, Bruce – there’s at least one referee on your side. Unfortunately, he’s writing columns and not making calls …

Ex-NHL referee: Keith deserved match penalty for deliberate attempt to injure, should get minimum five-game suspension

NHL: Vancouver Canucks at Chicago Blackhawks

According to former NHL referee Kerry Fraser, the punishment levied against Duncan Keith didn’t fit the crime.

That’s what Fraser wrote on his TSN.ca blog Thursday in the wake of Keith’s headshot on Vancouver’s Daniel Sedin — the Chicago defenseman received a two-minute elbowing penalty on a hit that forced Sedin out of the contest and left him with a suspected concussion.

Fraser says the referees working the game, Dan O’Halloran and Francois St. Laurent, got the call wrong.

The deliberate elbow delivered by Duncan Keith directly to the head of Daniel Sedin was at bare minimum a five-minute major and game misconduct for elbowing. The best call would have been a match penalty under Rule 45.5 for deliberate attempt to injure under the elbowing rule!

Duncan Keith demonstrated absolutely no intent on playing the puck that flew off the glass and was well out of range of Sedin when contact was made. Instead, once the opportunity for a payback on Daniel’s non-penalized shoulder contact to Keith’s head six and a half minutes earlier reared its ugly head, Duncan Keith seized the moment in an open-ice assault.  

As Daniel turned to look up ice and follow the puck, Duncan Keith’s elbow was elevated, cocked and planted with force directly to the head of a surprised Daniel Sedin.

The issue of retribution has come up on numerous occasions. It will be interesting to see how NHL discipline czar Brendan Shanahan views Keith’s motives, as it was Shanahan that suspended Boston’s Brad Marchand for a “predatory” low-bridge hit on Vancouver’s Sami Salo in January.

The word “predatory” was key because Shanahan believed the hit was in response to an earlier shoulder-check from Salo.

“This scenario played out 16 seconds earlier,” Shanahan said at the time. “Marchand was able to deliver and absorb a clean check on Salo, but Marchand shows clear frustration from the hit. Retribution is not a defense for clipping a player.”

If Shanahan is looking for advice on suspensions, Fraser has a few ideas. He feels Keith should get a “minimum” five-game suspension and Sedin should get one for his “careless” hit.

PHT Morning Skate: Taylor Hall would like his slump to go away

Taylor Hall

PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Taylor Hall is slumping and it’s his second season in the NHL. What do they call those things again…? (Edmonton Journal)

Calgary’s Paul Byron would like it if the Sabres stopped holding his first NHL goal puck hostage from last season when he was a Sabre. Tough crowd in Buffalo, eh? (Senators Extra)

Make it 6-8 weeks for Scottie Upshall to be out of the Panthers lineup. That didn’t seem to bother them last night thumping Dallas 6-0. (TSN)

The Ducks have their fingers crossed that Niklas Hagman can find his game and help the Ducks snap out of their losing ways. Good luck on both accounts there. (L.A. Times)

NHL concussion numbers are down so far this year? Apparently so. (Toronto Sun)

Scoring first could make all the difference in the upcoming Ducks-Kings home-and-home series. (L.A. Kings Insider)

New Jersey’s Adam Larsson doesn’t think Milan Lucic was gunning for him specifically last night. Don’t tell the Sabres that though. (The Star-Ledger)

Kerry Fraser says diving is still happening and officials can solve that by calling the penalty. Why wasn’t he this vocal when he was a referee? (TSN)

The Sharks are good but they want to get better in the faceoff circle. Just let superhero Joe Pavelski handle this. (CSNBayArea.com)

Former Panther Radek Dvorak says that Stephen Weiss should be Florida’s next captain. But that would make sense, Radek. (Sun Sentinel)

Finally, check out the kick save and a beauty by Rangers defenseman Michael Sauer to help bail out Henrik Lundqvist. (NHL)

Kerry Fraser says Milan Lucic deserved two-game suspension

Hockey Hall Of Fame Legends Classic Game

Brendan Shanahan was quick to condemn the Buffalo Sabres’ comments that goalies are becoming “fair game” after Milan Lucic wasn’t suspended for his check on Ryan Miller, but one retired official thinks that Lindy Ruff’s complaints are spot-on. Kerry Fraser claimed that Lucic deserved a two-game suspension in his TSN column:

I believe [Shanahan] really missed this call and has sent the wrong message. Like it or not, goalies enjoy preferred treatment similar to endangered species in the wild; at least up until this latest decision. It would now appear they are subjected to the same rules as any other player once they leave the “protection of their nest!” Lindy Ruff has every right to call foul on this non suspension. Milan Lucic should have been suspended for the next two (2) games.

Fraser goes on to explain that he attended a meeting with GMs and coaches in which it was generally agreed that goalies would be “untouchable.” Fraser also believed that the two-minute charging penalty should have been a major instead, so he disagreed with the on-ice officials as well as Shanahan’s ruling.

Long story short, there’s at least one (former) official who claims that goalies aren’t “fair game,” even if they’re outside the crease.

Kerry Fraser reflects on 18th anniversary of missing Wayne Gretzky’s high-stick on Doug Gilmour

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Just about any tortured fan base has its iconic moment of despair. Before they won two World Series and became a slightly cheaper version of the New York Yankees, the Boston Red Sox looked back at the Bill Buckner error in disgust. Cleveland Browns fans shudder to think of Earnest Byner’s fumble. Buffalo sports fans have “wide right” and Brett Hull’s foot in the crease.

Sometimes those moments revolve around self-inflicted wounds (see: Don Cherry’s “too many men on the ice” flub) while others focus on mistakes made by different parties. For many success-starved Toronto Maple Leafs fans, one infamous missed high-sticking penalty still causes serious discomfort.

In case you’re not a Maple Leafs (or Los Angeles Kings) fan, here’s the basic rundown. It was Game 6 of the Campbell Conference finals and Kings superstar Wayne Gretzky caught Leafs star Doug Gilmour with a high stick. Yet in what has been called the “most controversial call in Leafs history,” referee Kerry Fraser did not call a penalty on Gretzky. Moments later, Gretzky scored the winning power-play goal in overtime to send the series to a Game 7 that the Kings ultimately won. (Check out this amusing slice of broadcasting history, as Don Cherry discussed whether or not it was a “conspiracy” to get Gretzky’s Kings in the Cup finals.)

While the moment shares some interesting parallels to the Chicago Cubs’ Steve Bartman incident,* there’s little doubt that it was a missed call. Kerry Fraser was the official who ultimately made the call not to give Gretzky that penalty, a moment that made him the target of derision from Maple Leafs fans for nearly two decades.

Fraser admitted that he made the wrong call in his regular column with TSN, discussing how that call affected his life and the fact that he still hears about it to this day.

Every year, right up to my final season as a referee in the NHL I was contacted by the media on this day and asked to rehash the play.  They always ran with it and feelings were dredged up from old wounds that have never healed; especially from those that harbour hatred towards me.


The helplessness of not knowing for sure what had just occurred as Doug Gilmour dabbed blood from his chin and prevented it from staining the Fabulous Forum ice lingers in my memory.  While I don’t carry it with me like “luggage,” the baggage that many a Leafs fan continually pack, makes it impossible for the memory to ever go away.  After all it was only 18 short years ago!  Perhaps more time is required to close the wound?

Fraser said that he discussed the non-call with Gilmour, who was willing to let the mistake go.

Instead, please allow me to share with you a quote that Doug Gilmour gave to Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun on the occasion of my last game worked in the Air Canada Centre on March 27, 2010. Your captain said, “Please let it go.  It’s over.  The man’s retiring. For the sake of his sanity, let it go.”

Perhaps GM Brian Burke can put together a team that will help Leafs fans put that long-ago controversy behind them, then? Sometimes winning does a better job of healing wounds than time ever will.

* – Bartman caught a foul ball that could have been the last out of the eighth inning for the Chicago Cubs in Game 6 of the 2003 NLCS. Cubs outfielder Moises Alou grew livid after Bartman caught the ball and it seemed like things fell apart for the Cubs after that. Yet while people depicted Bartman as the cause for the team’s meltdown, it’s important to note that Chicago had a 3-2 series lead and 3-0 Game 6 lead over the Florida Marlins at that point. Bartman didn’t cause the Cubs to give up that lead or lose Game 7 just like Fraser wasn’t at fault for the rest of the Leafs’ shortcomings, but in sports with such a small margin of error – and within fan bases that are so tormented – it’s understandable that those moments are such taboo subjects.