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Campbell Under Fire For E-mails


Manatee-X

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I think most of us have at times been disappointed or upset with the quality of officiating in the NHL. On occasion, we've probably all thought there was some kind of conspiracy to help certain teams win and hold others back. And then we likely all thought to ourselves that such athing could never be allowed to happen. But in the past few years, we've heard from Jose Canseco about how rampant steroid abuse was in baseball, and despite peopel claiming he was just making statements to sell his book, it turns out most of what he said was true and we've subsequently found out that a lot of the top players in baseball were or still are doped up. Then we had the scandal in basketball, where a disgraced referee admitted that he colluded to throw games one way or the other and came out saying that he was far from being the only one.

To a certain point, I can understand that human error plays a certain part in officiating a game. And similarly, i can understand that some plays can be interpreted in more than one way. But I think a lot of us are also smart enough to realize that despite our biases as Habs fans, there have been certain games or incidents where the decisions from refs or front office officials are highly questionable and inconsistent, and it really ahs to make you wonder whether, purposely or not, the league is doing its best to direct outcomes in certain ways. Forget the fact that Colin Campbell has a son in the NHL. Even without this, the league has a vested interest, both financially and in terms of the image it wishes to project, in who wins certain games and in which players do well. Whether you believe it or not, the league benefits from having its marquis players like Crosby and Ovechkin succeed because merchandise sales will go up and because media interest will increase. It benefits from having its small-market teams in Tampa and Carolina and Anaheim and Phoenix do well because there are gains to be made there in revenue from improved attendance, whereas there is little benefit in places like NYC or Montreal or Toronto, where teams sell out every night. That's not to say the league would do everything it could to stop said teams from winning every so often, but I'm sure they don't mind if the cards get stacked in favor of their own interests just enough that it helps but not enough that it arouses suspicions.

If you ask me, Campbell's emails are likely just the tip of the iceberg. If they weren't, the league wouldn't have been so quick to dismiss this. Yes, the issue of Campbell protecting his son comes up (and even if he is not directly responsible for matters involving his son's team, a colleague of his is likely to hold some bias too, particularly if Campbell himself is breathing down everyone's back like the e-mails suggest), but other issues have surfaced too. For example, it is clear that Campbell is making judgments based on his opinion of a player's reputation. There have been questions as to whether he did not suspend Matt Cooke just because he felt Savard deserved the hit. Similar issues arose last year, when he called out Alex Burrows after Burrows' altercation with a referee. Why did Maxime Lapierre get 4 games for a hit from behind while Ovehckin got 2 despite the fact he's a repeat offender? I don't think the Habs are the only victims in this, but it's clear that the decisions being made by officials and the league are highly clouded by what teams the league feels it needs to support and which players it likes or dislikes.

Another issue that comes up is Campbell's advising Walkom on which referees to assign to certain games based on how much he thinks the refs will punish certain teams. This is in essence favoritism of certain teams over others, and I would almost wonder if the league handed us Chris Lee on purpose a few times now, even after we complained about his handling of our games.

The fact is that this controversy, whether the league wants to hide it or not, is likely deeper than we know, and I would be happy to have the truth come out, as it has in other sports. I think we'll be more surprised to hear what's really going on than we think.

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Bottom line......if this happened in the NFL,NBA or MLB, there would be instant terminations. There would be no standing up for one's integrity, excuse-making, sweeping under rug etc . Thats the difference between this league and others...it's still a "boy's club" and it will never change under Bettman.

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I think most of us have at times been disappointed or upset with the quality of officiating in the NHL. On occasion, we've probably all thought there was some kind of conspiracy to help certain teams win and hold others back. And then we likely all thought to ourselves that such athing could never be allowed to happen. But in the past few years, we've heard from Jose Canseco about how rampant steroid abuse was in baseball, and despite peopel claiming he was just making statements to sell his book, it turns out most of what he said was true and we've subsequently found out that a lot of the top players in baseball were or still are doped up. Then we had the scandal in basketball, where a disgraced referee admitted that he colluded to throw games one way or the other and came out saying that he was far from being the only one.

To a certain point, I can understand that human error plays a certain part in officiating a game. And similarly, i can understand that some plays can be interpreted in more than one way. But I think a lot of us are also smart enough to realize that despite our biases as Habs fans, there have been certain games or incidents where the decisions from refs or front office officials are highly questionable and inconsistent, and it really ahs to make you wonder whether, purposely or not, the league is doing its best to direct outcomes in certain ways. Forget the fact that Colin Campbell has a son in the NHL. Even without this, the league has a vested interest, both financially and in terms of the image it wishes to project, in who wins certain games and in which players do well. Whether you believe it or not, the league benefits from having its marquis players like Crosby and Ovechkin succeed because merchandise sales will go up and because media interest will increase. It benefits from having its small-market teams in Tampa and Carolina and Anaheim and Phoenix do well because there are gains to be made there in revenue from improved attendance, whereas there is little benefit in places like NYC or Montreal or Toronto, where teams sell out every night. That's not to say the league would do everything it could to stop said teams from winning every so often, but I'm sure they don't mind if the cards get stacked in favor of their own interests just enough that it helps but not enough that it arouses suspicions.

If you ask me, Campbell's emails are likely just the tip of the iceberg. If they weren't, the league wouldn't have been so quick to dismiss this. Yes, the issue of Campbell protecting his son comes up (and even if he is not directly responsible for matters involving his son's team, a colleague of his is likely to hold some bias too, particularly if Campbell himself is breathing down everyone's back like the e-mails suggest), but other issues have surfaced too. For example, it is clear that Campbell is making judgments based on his opinion of a player's reputation. There have been questions as to whether he did not suspend Matt Cooke just because he felt Savard deserved the hit. Similar issues arose last year, when he called out Alex Burrows after Burrows' altercation with a referee. Why did Maxime Lapierre get 4 games for a hit from behind while Ovehckin got 2 despite the fact he's a repeat offender? I don't think the Habs are the only victims in this, but it's clear that the decisions being made by officials and the league are highly clouded by what teams the league feels it needs to support and which players it likes or dislikes.

Another issue that comes up is Campbell's advising Walkom on which referees to assign to certain games based on how much he thinks the refs will punish certain teams. This is in essence favoritism of certain teams over others, and I would almost wonder if the league handed us Chris Lee on purpose a few times now, even after we complained about his handling of our games.

The fact is that this controversy, whether the league wants to hide it or not, is likely deeper than we know, and I would be happy to have the truth come out, as it has in other sports. I think we'll be more surprised to hear what's really going on than we think.

Finally somebody who agrees with me! Excellent post, Ted. People seem to forget that the NHL is a business. They also seem to forget how corrupt most corporations are. Just look at the garbage that is going on in the world now. What reason do we have to believe that the NHL is squeaky clean like most people seem to strongly agree with.

I have been waiting a long time for somebody in an executive position in the NHL to finally slip up. Well here it is. Like you said, this has to be only the tip of the iceberg. In all honesty, I actually think it is less likely that the NHL isn't stacked. It's only a matter of time until what is really going on gets exposed.

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Wow, bush league all over again. And that guy is in charge of player suspensions? Jeeeez, get him out of that office right away.

After reading all those emails, he seems to be the biggest whiner of them all :lol:

LOL. That's what I was thinking.

Does Campbell understand that almost nothing on the Internet is private? What a loser. He needs to be released asap.

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Everyone knows by now Olli Jokinen got 3 games for a cross check to the head against Calgary and Mattias Ritola 2 games for a hit from behind. So why wasn't Powe suspended for his hit against Halpern? Oh yeah, why bother asking? I already did and look what the result was.

:lol: Still trying to figure out the answer myself. I mean, Powe didn't even get a minor on the play, which is another thing I have yet to make sense of.

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So what Campbell is saying now is that if he knew that his emails would be made public he would choose his words more carefully? He is beginning to sound more and more like a barbarian in my opinion. The honesty here is in my opinion he has no concept of how to conduct himself in a professional manner, case closed. His opinion about this entire issue defies logic...

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There's one more thing I forgot to add. Campbell also reportedly called Savard a little fake artist. Given the fact Savard is still out of action, this would have to be the best fake job I've heard of. What is the long term prognosis on Savard and is he expected back anytime soon?

In his interview...he stated that the e-mail to the refs regarding savard was 3-4 yrs ago...not of recent.

He was noting that certain players were on a certain list to be watched for faking or whatever term they use with players attempting to draw penalties...and at that time,savard was one of the players.

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In his interview...he stated that the e-mail to the refs regarding savard was 3-4 yrs ago...not of recent.

He was noting that certain players were on a certain list to be watched for faking or whatever term they use with players attempting to draw penalties...and at that time,savard was one of the players.

Thanks for the correction.

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Thanks for the correction.

No problem...just was watching his interview yesterday,and he was explaining this....his side of the story anyways. :P

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No problem...just was watching his interview yesterday,and he was explaining this....his side of the story anyways. :P

What is the long term pronosis on Savard? Is he expected to play this season? And could the Powe hit on Halpern be an early candidate for the season's most atrociously blown call or noncall?

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I can't believe the bush league response to this. The NHL acts like he did nothing wrong and Campbell is completely unnapolegetic. Now I'm not saying he should necessarily be fired for it, but someone in his position needs to show some professionalism, and the fact that he's also a "hockey dad" doesn't change that. It creates the impression that he is biased, has a conflict of interest, and is jut unprofessional. The NHL should have responded quickly condemning the remarks and with some sort of punishment (fine, etc.) while also expressing confidence in Campbell and saying that this did not affect his judgement. Campbell should have appologized, said it was innapropriate, but that he never let those opinions affect his job. That would have at least looked okay while letting him keep his job, but in NFL, NBA, or MLB I believe he'd be gone by now.

Hockey is, by far, the worst sport for being an "old-boys-club". Because Campbell is a former player and has a son in the NHL, everyone was quick to defend him and completely dismiss that he is in a critical professional position with the NHL. It doesn't matter if as a Dad he was frustrated with Savard, you have to keep your professional life professional. It doesn't matter if, regardless of his son, he thinks Savard is a fake artist, you don't go writing something like that. In any other business, this would get you in serious trouble.

The NHL: full of players who have never had a real job, and unfortunately this applies to some of the people at the top as well.

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