The NHL announced on Wednesday that official Tim Peel will no longer work for the league as a result of a comment he made over a hot mic in last night’s game between the Nashville Predators and Detroit Red Wings.
NHL senior executive vice president of hockey operations Colin Campbell announced the dismissal of Peel Wednesday morning.
Nothing is more important than ensuring the integrity of our game,” Campbell said. “Tim Peel’s conduct is in direct contradiction to the adherence to that cornerstone principle that we demand of our officials and that our fans, players, coaches and all those associated with our game expect and deserve. There is no justification for his comments, no matter the context or his intention, and the National Hockey League will take any and all steps necessary to protect the integrity our game.”
The incident occurred in the second period of last nights game in Nashville. During the game’s broadcast, a referee could be heard on a hot mic, stating “It wasn’t much, but I wanted to get a [expletive] penalty against Nashville, early in the…”
Here is the broadcast video of the incident. [Warning: Language]
— Paul Chaunt (@paulyc1117) March 24, 2021
The penalty in question came just under five minutes into the second period when Peel called Nashville’s Viktor Arvidsson for tripping Detroit’s Jon Merrill. It was the second penalty of the game, but the first on Nashville.
In 2015, Peel said in an interview with Yahoo Sports that the NHL wants officials to sometimes make calls with “game management” in mind – in other words, to ensure a contest doesn’t get out of hand.
A study by the website FiveThiryEight.com in 2015 showed hockey referees have a tendency to be influenced by prior calls, meaning officials tend to even things out when penalties are one-sided.
Peel was scheduled to retire after his final game on April 24.
By Jon Sorensen