Maple Leafs fans furious after controversial referee chosen for game 6

Graham Montgomery
May 2, 2024  (5:03 PM)

NHL referee Chris Rooney helping Bruins netminder Linus Ullmark secure a strap on his helmet
Photo credit: X

The Toronto Maple Leafs will be taking on the Boston Bruins with their season on the line yet again tonight as they play game six down three games to two. Now Leafs fans are furious at the NHL after Boston native referee Chris Rooney was selected to officiate the game.

The announcement was made public by the X account scouting the refs. The page is dedicated to holding NHL referees accountable, sharing questionable and controversial events involving the officiating in NHL games. It is fair to say that it is somewhat controversial at the very least for a referee to be in a game involving his home town team.
South Boston's own Chris Rooney will be working tonight's Game 6 between the Bruins and Maple Leafs with referee Dan O'Rourke. Ryan Daisy and Devin Berg will work the lines:

Leafs fans were right to point this out following the announcement. Many expressed concerns about bias, adding that referees should not be allowed to be in games with their home town teams. After all, Chris Rooney very likely grew up as a fan of the Boston Bruins. Rooney's partner for the game, Dan O'Rourke, is a native of Calgary, Alberta.

Am I the only one who thinks that someone from Boston should not be allowed to ref a playoff game that has the Bruins in it??? And that goes for any team, any location, any ref.

That being said, there are plenty of referees from the greater Toronto area currently in the NHL. None of them are officiating this game, but fans have hypothesized that that fact actually works against the Leafs at times as the referees are afraid to look like they are biased in favor of the Leafs, making it harder for them to draw calls. Regardless, hopefully the officiating will not be a major factor in tonight's game as the Leafs look to force a game seven.
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Maple Leafs fans furious after controversial referee chosen for game 6

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