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Game 7 referee choice could be a disadvantage for the Oilers


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Sam Jones
May 20, 2024  (2:43 PM)
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Game 7 referee
Photo credit: Reddit.com

In the high-stakes arena of the Stanley Cup playoffs, every decision counts, especially those made before the puck even drops.

Tonight's game 7 brings into sharp focus the critical role referees play, as their influence on the game's outcome becomes increasingly apparent. Amidst the unpredictability of this playoff season, the selection of referees Chris Rooney and Jean Hebert for tonight's crucial matchup is causing a stir among fans and analysts alike.
The concern stems from the track record associated with Rooney, who seems to have a surprisingly favorable history with the Vancouver Canucks. According to data from, which tracks referee performance and team outcomes, the Canucks boast an impressive 10-0-1 record in games officiated by Rooney over the past three years. This statistic is hard to overlook, especially considering the Canucks' overall performance during this period. Check out the detailed stats here:
Rooney's influence was notably felt in game 3 of this series, where despite a balance of calls favoring Edmonton, the Canucks eked out a 4-3 victory. Contrastingly, Hebert, who refereed game 6, saw the Oilers dominate the Canucks 5-1, even though the penalty calls slightly favored Vancouver. More insights on these dynamics can be found through Jeff Paterson's commentary:
The stakes are high, and with such a pivotal game on the horizon, the choice of referees has not only raised eyebrows but also significant concerns about fairness and impartiality. For the Oilers, already tasked with overcoming numerous challenges in these playoffs, tonight's game adds another hurdle. As the hours count down, all eyes will be on how this decision might tilt the ice.
POLL
MAY 20   |   47 ANSWERS
Game 7 referee choice could be a disadvantage for the Oilers

Do you think the referee choice will have a negative impact on the game?

No, they're doing their best to stay neutral2042.6 %
Yes, the referees may sway the tide of the game2757.4 %
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