Carolina Hurricanes head coach Rod Brind’Amour was dinged with a $25,000 fine by the NHL after he criticized officials on Wednesday after the team’s 4-3 double-overtime loss against the Boston Bruins in Toronto.

That was a big punch for the Canes. Everyone, especially coaches, knows that the NHL doesn’t like to be slapped in the face, and, like other leagues, isn’t afraid to hand down hefty penalties.  However, given the nature of the comments, the fine may be a little exaggerated.

Carolina Coach Fined By NHL For Badmouthing Ref

The NHL said in a statement that it had levied a conditional fine of $25,000 against Carolina Hurricanes coach Brind’Amour “which will be collected, in addition to any subsequent discipline, in the event of similar inappropriate behavior through Aug. 12, 2021.”

Brind’Amour felt offended with Charlie Coyle’s score in the second period and began disputing what he considered had been an illegal pass before the score.  The officials who ruled Canes goalie Petr Mrazek had control on the puck denied the hand pass.  Nevertheless, the referees did not blow the whistle when Mrazek went to freeze the puck.  Then, Mrazek lost control of the ball, and Coyle had a great opportunity in which to drop the puck in the net.

In Brind’Amour’s postgame Zoom conference, much to his disappointment, no one asked about the incident.  As a result, he took the initiative and had a call with local beat writers sometime later to vent.  Brind’Amour told The News & Observer, “This is why the league’s a joke, in my opinion, on these things.”  He added, “That one is a crime scene.”

Confusion On The Ice

Brind’Amour said referees Chris Lee and Francis Charron did not provide him any input about the play on the ice, which led him to choose between: challenge the hand pass or challenge the missed stop.  Unfortunately, the coach chose the wrong thing, and it cost the Canes an unwanted goal.  Getting the fine only spun him up even more, and he was determined to let his frustrations be known.  However, $25,000 seems a little over the top for what could be considered fairly innocuous comments.

Carolina Coach Brind’Amour was self-explanatory of what he said to the referees that resulted in his fine from the NHL. He asserted to The News & Observer, “They came to me, and I said, ‘If he has possession of it, then it’s goalie interference.  If he doesn’t have possession, then it’s a hand pass. It’s one of the two. I don’t know what you’re calling on the ice.'”

He explained further, “All he has to do is tell me, ‘We’re calling it non-possession [by Mrazek],’ then we’re challenging a glove-hand pass.  If it’s possession, then goaltender interference. I said, ‘Tell me the call on the ice.’ They wouldn’t do it when I said, ‘What is the call?’ So I had to flip a coin.” To be honest, Brind’Amour did not sound aggressive or unrespectful.  Sometimes, misunderstandings among people are maximized only for the sake of creating dispute and conflict in which actually there was none.

On the same matter, Brind’Amour states that he asked the referees what they called on the ice, then he said the referees just answered he had two choices: call one or the other. The referees seem as though they weren’t very eager to help.  “It should be so easy,” Brind’Amour said.  “If they said the goalie had it, then it’s an easy call.  They wouldn’t tell you. It makes no sense. I know we weren’t the better team, but if that goal doesn’t go in, do we win that game? I don’t know.”  Given that the game has implications for playoff positions, it’s not surprising that the coach would be a little heated.  In the end, Patrice Bergeron scored a goal in the second overtime to give Boston the win and a 1-0 lead in the series.  The second game will be held today.