According to the ever-interesting @ScoutingTheRefs on Twitter, Game 7 was scheduled to be officiated by Kelly Sutherland and Steve Kozari.
You know, the same Kelly Sutherland who in Game 5 watched Tyler Bozak take out Noel Acciari with a blatant trip and decided to swallow his whistle, leading to what would stand up as the game-winning goal.
As you can imagine, many Bruins fans weren’t happy with the prospect of Sutherland coming back, though one could argue that Sutherland might subconsciously favor the Bruins after such an obvious gaffe.
It would appear that the league agrees that Sutherland shouldn’t be given another chance to impact this series:
NHL will go back to the same men who refereed Game 6, in Game 7.— John Shannon (@JSportsnet) June 10, 2019
Gord Dwyer and Chris Rooney. #StanleyCup #BluesVsBruins #Game7
INTERESTING. This, to me, is the NHL quietly admitting that Sutherland and Kozari combined to blow that call. I guess it’s as close to an apology as the Bruins will get.
(Game 5 also featured a hit that the league deemed worthy of a suspension but neither official deemed worthy of a penalty, so...yeah.)
Regardless, most agree that Sunday night’s Game 6 was reasonably officiated. Most of the calls were obvious, and the refs did a decent job chucking the Blues when they started taking cheapshots late.
The league must agree that Game 6 was refereed well if they’re sending the same two out there again. People make mistakes. It happens. Ideally, Sutherland can improve going forward and everything works out.
Still, Bruins fans will be happy to know that he won’t be able to impact Game 7.