Jump to content

Welcome to canucks.com Vancouver Canucks homepage





What to do with Burrows and Auger

Posted by Hordichuk, 12 January 2010 · 282 views

Burrows Auger NHL
I read a blog tonight that made a good point about how the NBA mis-handled the same situation with referee Joey Crawford. Same situation with Spurs star Tim Duncan. Crawford was suspended and Duncan fined. In San Antonio's first game after the incident, Duncan was ejected after getting a double-technical, and a brutal non-call in a playoff series against the Lakers cost them a game, which the NBA later apologized for.

Are the refs close with each other? Yes. If Auger is suspended over this, will there be resentment towards Burrows? Yes.

They have to tread carefully. I really haven't read a really good idea over what exactly to do with it in the short-term while the NHL investigates, but a lot of ideas for what not to do. Don't replay the game, don't award the Canucks a point, don't suspend Auger and don't fine or suspend Burrows. Those would just be counter-productive.

The real problem here is that Burrows is the hottest player in the NHL right now. He is the top-scoring winger on the line with the NHL's points leader, is first star of the week and a fan favourite in one of the biggest markets in the league. Knowing Vancouver's, er, history, and also knowing what happened when Clarence Campbell suspended Maurice Richard (I know that Burrows is probably not as good as Richard, but we'll let that go for now) you can't do anything with him right now.

But you also can't let him get away with this and try and sweep it under the rug. You hit Auger, you hit the refs and the animosity increases. If you ignore it, and instruct an officiating pair to give the Canucks a game, that's unfair to the team they'd be playing. More importantly, this is a serious accusation and Burrows, the Canucks and their fans deserved to have it answered.

My temporary solution, based on being up at 3 am and running on one too many colas (Coke, not Pepsi) is the following:

-Immediately open an investigation on whether or not the allegations are true. Interview both coaches, Burrows, Auger, Dennis LaRue, Vaughan Rody and Brian Mach.

-Immediately open an investigation onto personal vendettas from referees on certain players. Get a team of crack researchers to crunch numbers and determine whether there's a trend, whether certain officials are more likely to call certain players or teams in certain situations, and review those calls made.

-Immediately suspend Stephane Auger with pay for all games in which he's scheduled to referee against the Vancouver Canucks.

-Send an NHL officials executive to monitor every game played by Stephane Auger and the Vancouver Canucks.

-Place Alex Burrows on probation, pending the results of the first investigation. Make sure he's on his absolute best behaviour. If he turns out to be in the wrong, fine him the amount for criticizing an official, but double it for the seriousness of the accusations. If he turns out to be in the right, fire Stephane Auger and charge him with fraud to prevent other vigilante referees.

This post was originally posted in one of the zillions of Auger threads in Canucks Talk, but because I hadn't seen a solution anywhere that didn't have major drawbacks, I felt obligated to suggest one.

Keep in mind it's 3 am. Comment how you will. I'd rather hear your disagreements. Bonus points will be given if you can write coherently.

  • 0



I don't think immediately suspending Auger is a good solution. At this point it's Auger's word against Burrows' word and we have to give them both the benefit of the doubt. Burrows will most likely be fined for his post-game comments but whether or not Auger gets suspended remains to be seen. I seem to recall hearing that due to the amount of games rookie officials have been working a lot of coaches are unhappy with the inconsistency of the calls - but talk about game-to-game consistency - first a no-calls game against Calgary and now a whistle-happy game against Nashville.

Let''s hope for the sake of the NHL that it doesn't turn into a Tim Donaghy thing.
    • 0
It will be interesting to see if anyone has video/stills of Auger talking to Burrows before the game. The existence of such a video and Burrows reaction to whatever is said would lend a lot of credence to what he is claiming. Even if there is no proof of the conversation taking place I'll still have what we all saw in the game to fall back on - if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck it's probably a duck. Quack quack Auger, you do not belong as an official in any capacity in any pro or amateur sport.
    • 0
Photo
Mike.Gillis
Jan 12 2010 01:17 PM
The main issue that this brings up is are all referees as emotional as Auger (if the allegations are in fact true). The league has to set some sort of precedent here that ensures referees can effectively do their jobs.

The implications of there jobs are enormous and can in some ways make-or-break a team. Burrows as absolutely right when he stated, what if the Canucks miss the playoffs by one point. Think about it, how would you feel as a fan? As a player? As a coach? etc.

The league needs to polish the SOP that is used by refs and take action to ensure that these types of things do not happen.
    • 0

I don't think immediately suspending Auger is a good solution. At this point it's Auger's word against Burrows' word and we have to give them both the benefit of the doubt. Burrows will most likely be fined for his post-game comments but whether or not Auger gets suspended remains to be seen. I seem to recall hearing that due to the amount of games rookie officials have been working a lot of coaches are unhappy with the inconsistency of the calls - but talk about game-to-game consistency - first a no-calls game against Calgary and now a whistle-happy game against Nashville.

Let''s hope for the sake of the NHL that it doesn't turn into a Tim Donaghy thing.


It would be for the fans and media.

This is not a first time issue with Auger.

There is a lot of circumstantial evidence that can support Burr's claims......the most damning is not the footage of Auger speaking with Burr....but those calls made in the 3rd.

Ill tell you right now......whatever game he is pencilled in to ref next.....im willing to bet that coach/GM/owner is absolutely wanting him suspended until the investigation is over.
    • 0

It will be interesting to see if anyone has video/stills of Auger talking to Burrows before the game. The existence of such a video and Burrows reaction to whatever is said would lend a lot of credence to what he is claiming. Even if there is no proof of the conversation taking place I'll still have what we all saw in the game to fall back on - if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck it's probably a duck. Quack quack Auger, you do not belong as an official in any capacity in any pro or amateur sport.


If you look in one of the Auger threads, there is a clip of Auger talking to Burrows prior to the game and Burrows' reaction seems consistent to his claims.
    • 0
Auger is guilty of being biased...plain and simple..and Alex and the Canucks should not be penalized for bringing it to light...quack, quack
    • 0
its human nature to get someone back, however in a 2-2 game with that kind of value you can not make borderline calls one after another. the officiating in this game was suspicious, and evidence of auger talking to burrows before the game can be seen. please explain to me if there was no vendetta, what the chances are of a ref talking to a player before a game the same player who at the end of the game claims the refree said he was out to get him. yes if the canucks won the game burrows would have probably went to the coach and the GM and told them about the threat. but canucks didn't win and burrows ( human nature again) couldn't control his emotions which lead to him calling out the ref. either way all evidence point to auger being guilty. dont forget auger was the same ref who was involved with shane doan in a similar situation a while ago.

ps. what is the deal of articles calling burrows a diver? he embelishes some times but which hockey player doesn't. it is absoloutly stupid to base the outcome of this situation on the player on the ice.
    • 0
I'm not reading that...
    • 0

It would be for the fans and media.

This is not a first time issue with Auger.

There is a lot of circumstantial evidence that can support Burr's claims......the most damning is not the footage of Auger speaking with Burr....but those calls made in the 3rd.

Ill tell you right now......whatever game he is pencilled in to ref next.....im willing to bet that coach/GM/owner is absolutely wanting him suspended until the investigation is over.


I think that is one of the biggest mistakes the NHL can make. The decisions they come up with should not be affected by the fans or media, but rather the players, general managers, and the league itself. Like I said, it's Auger's word against Burrows' word, and to side with Auger completely would mean that they do acknowledge that the refs in this league have very strong biases and cannot stay impartial during a game. To side with Burrows completely would mean that the NHL would fall out of favour with the NHLOA, and that could get messy.

You hit the nail on the head BedBeats, it's a lot of circumstantial evidence and to make any decision based on that is, I think, a big mistake.
    • 0

My Picture

Recent Entries

Latest Visitors

Canucks.com is the official Web site of The Vancouver Canucks. The Vancouver Canucks and Canucks.com are trademarks of The Vancouver Canucks Limited Partnership.  NHL and the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup are registered trademarks and the NHL Shield and NHL Conference logos are trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P.  Copyright © 2009 The Vancouver Canucks Limited Partnership and the National Hockey League.  All Rights Reserved.