View Full Version : Good refs

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01-28-2013, 04:48 PM
With all this talk about blowing games, throwing things down the tunnel, even walking onto the ice with a hockey stick while wearing dark sunglasses, I figured I'd ask...

What refs, in your league and personal opinion, actually do a GOOD job?

Sure, being a ref is a thankless job, and anyone who has tried it will tell you how difficult it really is, so I think it's about high time we give some kudos to those who are consistent, in control of their games, and truly profess their love for the greatest sport out there.

01-28-2013, 04:49 PM

01-28-2013, 04:53 PM
John Gravallese and Rob Bernard, HEA ref and linesman.

01-28-2013, 04:59 PM
John Gravallese and Rob Bernard, HEA ref and linesman.

Gravallese is also on the ECAC lineup; I do see some crossover, at least from the few HEA games I've witnessed. In the ECAC, Joe Carusone and Bob St. Lawrence are very consistent and stay in control of their games. I seem to remember Derek Wahl and Jeff Zelasko also being fairly good. Ernst isn't too bad, either.

01-28-2013, 05:11 PM
Gravelese is by far the best in Hockey East

01-28-2013, 05:15 PM
I don't understand the question.

01-28-2013, 05:17 PM
Derek Shepherd.:rolleyes:

01-28-2013, 06:29 PM
I agree

John Gravallese and Rob Bernard, HEA ref and linesman.

01-28-2013, 06:34 PM
I don't understand the question.:D Well played.

01-28-2013, 06:38 PM
Don Adam balances careers as hockey referee, police officer
POSTED: 06/18/2012 11:07:57 PM MDT
UPDATED: 06/18/2012 11:08:24 PM MDTBy Mike Chambers
The Denver Post

How many cops have been on an NHL ice sheet wearing Peter Forsberg's skates? Probably just one: City of Louisville police officer Don Adam, who still finds plenty of work at hockey games, including DU vs. CC. (Karl Gehring, The Denver Post)
On the streets or inside an ice arena, excitement and drama seem to follow Don Adam, a genuine Front Range-raised cop. The hockey referee and Louisville police officer is one of the state's most versatile law-enforcement officers, often conducting his business in a heated college game between rivals or a civil dispute in the small city east of Boulder.

The one-time NHL referee has been a police officer for nine years and is approaching his 24th year with the Denver-based Western Collegiate Hockey Association. He is no stranger to the intense University of Denver-Colorado College rivalry, and he wore the orange referee stripes during the 1992 and 1998 Winter Olympics, five world championships and the 1993 NHL preseason.

He was the first NHL video replay official at Avalanche games, which he did from 1995 until the league began to rule on all its replays from its home office in Toronto at the start of the 2003-04 season.

"In hockey, we work from the rule book, and as a cop we work from the Colorado Revised Statutes, but to interpret those things in the two respective jobs, there's a lot of similarities," Adam said from his patrol car. "Both professions require a lot of quick decisions in pressure-filled situations. Experience, judgment and common sense are a huge part in how you apply it all."

Denver-area linesman Tim Swiader has been working under Adam for more than 20 years. Swiader recalls a popular YouTube video of Adam being miked up during a game between Alaska Anchorage and Wisconsin in Madison, Wis., about 10 years ago. Adam was questioned by the scorer's table about the penalties he had just called, and instead of explaining the obvious — which he doesn't have to do — Adam quipped, "I just make up (expletive) as I go."

"That was just Donnie being lighthearted in a tight situation," Swiader said. "Even in the toughest situations, Donnie doesn't get wrapped up in the moment. He maintains his composure."

Realistically, Adam said he could call a penalty on every shift and pull over a driver every minute.

"It's the interpretation of the rule book or the law that prevents me from doing that," Adam said. "It's knowing how to appropriately and fairly interpret the laws."

Many of Adam's best hockey stories are fair game to share. An angry fan threw a cowboy boot at him in Texas during a USA-Russia pre-Olympic tour game 1992. He lost 13 pounds during Colorado College's 1-0 triple-overtime playoff game victory over Wisconsin at the Air Force Academy in 1997.

He's the world's only NHL linesman to know how it feels to wear Peter Forsberg's skates — and drop the puck beside the former Avalanche center while wearing them during a game.

Adam borrowed a pair of Forsberg's skates in 1999, serving as a substitute linesman in a game against Calgary. Adam was asked to come down from the video booth to replace injured linesman Thor Nelson — who absorbed a slap shot to the spine by Adam Foote — during the first intermission.

"An Avs assistant equipment manager got me some long underwear and a pair of skates my size, and said: 'These should work. They're a pair of Forsberg's skates,' " Adam said. "The funniest part was, when I got out there early in the second period, I immediately had a faceoff in my end, and Forsberg took the draw."

Adam, 47, was born in Westminster and played youth hockey for DU, Hyland Hills, Arvada and Littleton. He turned to officiating in his early 20s after being cut twice in junior-A tryouts.

"Don was good right from the get-go," said Air Force coach Frank Serratore, who held the same position at DU from 1990-94. "He's sure of himself, confident and he looks you right in the eye. I like guys like that. When he makes a call, he's decisive — he just had a really good feel for officiating right from the get-go."

Adam and Serratore met in 1984 in Rochester, Minn., where Adam unsuccessfully tried out for Serratore's Austin (Minn.) Mavericks of the United States Hockey League.

"I showed him what his calling was," Serratore joked. "If it weren't for me, he would have gone down in history as being a bad player instead of a great ref. It was the best call he ever made."

Adam has worked in virtually every North American hockey league, from juniors to the pros. His dream was to be an NHL referee, but that ended almost as soon as it began. After he signed a contract with the NHL for the 1993-94 season, Adam's girlfriend was involved in a near-fatal car accident, and he took time off to be with her just before the NHL officials went on strike. He never got another chance.

"It was pretty depressing, and I contemplated quitting officiating altogether, but then I embraced the fact there were other opportunities, and the next year (1994-95) the IHL came to town with the (Denver) Grizzlies," Adam said.

Adam also worked in the Canadian Hockey League's major-junior system — the Western, Ontario and Quebec leagues — and was the director of officiating for Roller Hockey International and the West Coast Hockey League, both now defunct.

He finally got a "real" job in 2003.

"I've wanted to be a cop since I was 17 or 18 years old," Adam said. "At the time, my girlfriend's dad was a cop and I really looked up to him, but that was when my hockey career started taking off, so I pursued the hockey for a number of years before coming back to this profession."

Good calls.

Mike Chambers: 303-954-1357 or mchambers@denverpost.com

As an ex-LEO I am really surprised every defense lawyer doesn't salivate every time Don Adam take the stand in court. I mean every case he was involved in I would just play this video.

And ask what other **** do you make up?

01-28-2013, 07:08 PM
John Gravallese and Rob Bernard, HEA ref and linesman.I'll go along with that but I feel strongly that Bernard wants things too perfect at the faceoff and takes too much time doing so.

I miss Fitzy from HEA. A lot.

captain beefheart
01-28-2013, 07:10 PM
I am not qualified to reply other than to say that this is a great topic, Mr. Flag

01-29-2013, 12:41 AM
In ECAC Chip McDonald does a nice job. For ECAC women I think Kathy Guay and a woman named Weston (I forget her first name) are fine refs.

One ref who stood out in my mind but not in a college game is H.E., the Rt. Hon David Johnston CC. I saw video of him reffing a game between the Generals and Admirals of the Canadian Forces versus the military and naval attaches from embassies in Ottawa. David is 71 and it looks like he can skate almost as fast as he did when he was an All-American at Harvard. I did not hear of anyone arguing a call. Of course it might have been reluctance to argue with the Governor General. Well done Sir!!

The Rube
01-29-2013, 12:44 AM
In private convos with Campion (retired, I believe) and Beaurlein, while I have disagreed at the moment of the calls, talking with them afterwards....they are/were decent refs. Consistent anyway. I think that is all we ask of them is to be consistent....

The Boomer
01-29-2013, 01:28 AM
Thanks to GopherBigGuy911 for the article on Don Adam. I have thought he is the best in the WCHA for several years. His recent partner, Tim Walsh, also seems to call a fair game.

Don Adam will be the supervisor of referees in the NCHC. SCSU Husky coach Bob Motzko said he believes Adam will do a fine job in that position, but as a coach, Motzko will miss Adam as an on-ice referee.

01-29-2013, 06:35 AM
In ECAC Chip McDonald does a nice job. For ECAC women I think Kathy Guay and a woman named Weston (I forget her first name)

To begin with in HEA Gravelese has been the best over a good period of time, however I think he is beginning to be a little slow and is doing a Steve McBride imitation at times. His experience does allow games to have a flow and he does have control of the game. He also appears to be a good guy for younger guys to partner with

I actually think going to the 2 ref/2 linesman system has improved officiating.

To the point of women refs her first name is Carol and she is a former coach at Cornell and player at UNH. Guay was an "edgy" player at Brown. So the question is does playing at that level give insight and a feel what to call and what you need to do to keep a flow the players like? What are the feelings on Scott Whittemore (Brown) and Roy (Maine). I know a few of the linesmen also played at this level,,,,,Marty Hughes at BC, Todd Whittemore at PC and I occasionally seen the name Justin Geene who played at BC.

01-29-2013, 08:02 AM
I miss Fitzy from HEA. A lot.

Oh & Grav is solid.

01-29-2013, 10:24 AM
Oh & Grav is solid.

Agree with the comments on Gravellese and Bernard. Fitzy too. One thing I've noticed this year is that the new HEA officiating boss (Dan Schachte) seems to be working in some young legs I haven't seen much of in the past, which means that he's probably gradually (and gracefully) easing out some of the guys who have lost a step in order to head off any Steve McBride re-incarnations. Good move in the long run but probably some bumps in the short term as the new guys find their comfort levels. Of the younger guys, Kevin Shea skates well but IMO, has a bad habit of judging body contact by how much noise it makes, i.e., clean hard checks become charging or boarding. If he can get past this, he'll be fine. Of the newer linesmen, Tommy George looks really impressive.

01-29-2013, 12:14 PM
Personally, i applaud the refs every time they take the ice. Not loud or hard, but three or four claps and even less at the ECHL games for fear of life or limb. And at the beginning and end of every period for the players' and refs' efforts to play well and entertain us fools in the stands. And to further impeach my opinions, i applaud the coach for the opposing team during the introductions. We should all be good hosts until the puck drops. Otherwise, it is we that still "inhale deeply to create a vacuum".

and yeah, i am avoiding the actual question - i was a politician for twenty-two years too.

You could give a couple people a run for their money in the political threads. :p:D

You do bring up a good point, though: Every game is a clean slate. With the exception of one particular game a few years ago, I will NOT boo any ref at the start of the game. I'll give out one of those "aw, ****" comments if it's someone who is notoriously awful, but until they do something dumb, they get my respect.

01-29-2013, 01:55 PM
Thanks to GopherBigGuy911 for the article on Don Adam. I have thought he is the best in the WCHA for several years. His recent partner, Tim Walsh, also seems to call a fair game.

Don Adam will be the supervisor of referees in the NCHC. SCSU Husky coach Bob Motzko said he believes Adam will do a fine job in that position, but as a coach, Motzko will miss Adam as an on-ice referee.
The problem with having one of your best refs take the supervisor position is that there's one less good ref on the ice. Sure Piotrowski (now CCHA head of officials, or whatever the title is) was often a target of fans, but he was one of our best officials. As much as I dislike admitting it, I think McInchak is currently the best CCHA ref.