NHL names O’Halloran, O’Rourke, Rooney and Watson Stanley Cup finals referees


According to the NHL Officials Association, referees Dan O’Halloran, Dan O’Rourke, Chris Rooney and Brad Watson have been selected to work the 2012 Stanley Cup finals.

(In case you’re curious, the linesmen will be Derek “Give ’em Hell” Amell, “Mean” Jean Morin, Jonny “What happened to the H?” Murray and Pierre “Red Light” Racicot.)

O’Rourke and O’Halloran are the only holdovers from the 2011 Cup finals between Vancouver and Boston. This will be Watson’s first Cup finals since 2008, though he’s hardly any stranger having worked in 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007. After minutes of exhaustive research, it does not appear as though Rooney’s ever worked a Cup finals.

But hey, enough about the guys still working — we want to know who got cut!

Of the eight referees that worked the conference finals, Chris Lee, Wes McCauley, Kelly Sutherland and Kevin Pollock were dropped. Pollock, you’ll recall, was the referee that called the interference penalty on Drew Doughty in Game 5 (in OT) of the Western Conference finals.

A call that led to Doughty’s calm, rational response.

Interestingly enough, Pollock worked that game — one marked by questionable officiating — with Watson, who’s going to the finals.

As for the others…

— McCauley was one of the referees called out by Phoenix head coach Dave Tippett (the other being O’Halloran) after a Game 3 loss to L.A.

— Sutherland called the 2011 Cup finals, so it’s a bit surprising he wasn’t asked back. Mind you, this was his calling card from that series…

— I don’t recall Lee being at the center of anything controversial, so perhaps he was the odd man out because of his limited postseason experience.