We’re down to the final four teams of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The New York Rangers and Tampa Bay Lightning will face off in the East while the Chicago Blackhawks and Anaheim Ducks will meet in the West. They’ll be joined by 16 NHL officials. The National Hockey League has announced the eight referees and eight linesmen who will work the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoff Conference Finals.
Eric Furlatt, Steve Kozari, Wes McCauley, Dan O’Halloran, Kevin Pollock, Chris Rooney, Kelly Sutherland, and Brad Watson. Standby referee is Gord Dwyer.
Derek Amell, Scott Cherrey, Michel Cormier, Greg Devorski, Shane Heyer, Brad Kovachik, Brian Murphy, and Pierre Racicot. Standby linesman is Steve Miller.
The four referees from last year’s cup final – Kozari, McCauley, O’Halloran, and Watson – have all moved on.
Also noteworthy is the vote of confidence in referee Brad Watson by the NHL. Despite the controversy surrounding claims made by Montreal’s Brandon Prust, Watson moves on to the Conference Finals.
Referees Marc Joannette, Chris Lee, Dan O’Rourke, and Gord Dwyer missed the cut, though Dwyer stays on as a standby official. O’Rourke is the most surprising omission. He hasn’t missed the Conference Finals since 2010, working three Cup Finals during that span. Joannette’s made it to the past two Conference Finals.
Linesmen missing the cut are Derek Nansen, Bryan Pancich, Jay Sharrers, and Steve Miller, who goes to the standby role. Both Miller and Sharrers have worked Cup Finals before, Sharrers most recently in 2013 and Miller from 2009-2011.