Taken from Fraser's column
"Respect must be earned—not demanded"
Why must coaches and players earn respect from the referees? Refs are paid huge money to officiate each game with an unbaised objective point of view. So is Fraser trying to point out that bias clearly exist in the NHL when it comes to officiating. Aside from that, hasn't AV won the division 5 times, the president trophy twice and also the Jack Adams trophy? That should be enough respect earned right there. Did AV as a coach ever fake a penalty or embarassed a ref? How bout Henrik when he was hammered by Mcgratton way late and absolutely no call on the play? Henrik, art ross and hart winner doesn't deserve respect?
How do you earn respect? Daniel gets treated like punching bag and the respect he gets is a diving call a few games ago?
Referees are there to maintain the rules and the integrity of the game and not to interject personal bias to influence the outcome of a game, that clearly defeats the spirit of what a referee should be. Obviously Fraser doesn't see it that way but he clearly understands the power and influence referees hold as he concludes his column by lecturing AV
"Take a lesson Alain. Bench penalties can sometimes be game changers"
Just these two sentences alone tells you that the refs have certain bias towards certain teams and players. This type of culture is why its so frustrating to watch a NHL game at the moment. Burrows was right to speak out against the refs and so too was AV. This biased culture of current referees must change before any type of improvement can be found in the officiating of the NHL
As an aside I have often wondered why the league mandated players to put their numbers on their helmets. Makes it easier for refs to make "judgement" calls I suppose.
(and also easier for teams to tell the Sedins apart!)