The NHL has decided to fire a game official who was caught on audio saying he “wanted to get” a penalty against the Nashville Predators during the team’s game Tuesday night against the Detroit Red Wings.
Official Tim Peel was caught on broadcast audio saying, “It wasn’t much, but I wanted to get a f---ing penalty against Nashville early.”
This was with 12:42 remaining in the 2nd period when Nashville forward Viktor Arvidsson was issued a minor tripping penalty:
Maybe if you're a mic'd up ref, you shouldn't express how you wanted to call a penalty against a team earlier in the game, changing how you ref the rest of the game.— Matt Best (@bestofmatt) March 24, 2021
"It wasn't much but I wanted to get a fuckin' penalty against Nashville early in the..."#Preds #LGRW pic.twitter.com/6fZImkdqLr
The NHL was taking a look at the incident, then later announced Peel won’t be officiating in the NHL anymore. The context of Peel’s comment is unclear, but the league decided that does not matter. He “no longer will be working NHL games now or in the future.”
Here’s the statement from the league on Wednesday:
“Nothing is more important than ensuring the integrity of our game,” reads a statement from the NHL’s Colin Campbell, senior executive vice president of hockey operations. “Tim Peel’s conduct is in direct contradiction to the adherence to that cornerstone principle that we demand of our officials and that of our fans, players, coaches and all those associated with our game expect and deserve. There is no justification for his comments, no matter the context of his intention, and the National Hockey League will take any and all steps necessary to protect the integrity of our game.”
The Predators won, 2-0. Both teams received three penalties, then the Predators got a fourth for putting the puck over the glass.
Nashville was 1-2 on the power play while Detroit came up empty in three power play opportunities.