Referee Tim Peel recently joined Jason Gregor and Frank Seravalli on the Daily Faceoff Podcast.  The recently-retired official talked about the March 23 hot mic incident that brought about his early retirement from the National Hockey League.

Peel weighed in on the situation.

“Normally, if you’ve called 5 or 6 penalties against one team, I think everybody kind of knows, hey, if you can find one against the other team to keep them happy, then that’s what we do.”

“But in this case there’d only been one penalty called in the game and it was against Detroit.  When I called that penalty – I think it was Arvidsson that tripped the Detroit player – and when I threw my arm up, I was in the neutral zone and I honestly thought that Arvidsson tripped him. As soon as I throw my arm up, I’m like ‘Geez, he pushed him down.’  I didn’t see it the way that I thought that I saw it.”

“I was working with a veteran referee in Kelly Sutherland who is one of the best in the NHL and I think it was more my defense mechanism when I went over to the box.”

“We take a lot of pride in the penalties that we call that we call to make sure we call good NHL penalties. There’s nothing worse than calling a weak penalty against a team and then the other team scores on the power play.  I think it was my defense mechanism kicking in — more of an embarrassment thing to a guy that I really respected a lot in Kelly Sutherland, and I said ‘Yeah, it wasn’t much. I wanted to get a penalty,’  which wasn’t the case at all.”

“I didn’t want to get a penalty against Nashville. I just made a mistake. I made a tremendous error in judgment by choosing the words that I did.  […]”

“My intention as it was never in the entire time I was in the NHL, was never to get a team. Any ref that would referee like that, he probably got fired over the years, because that’s just not how we officiate. […] It was never my intent to get any team.  At the end of the day, I made a big mistake.  A mistake that I am still paying for today.”


Check out more from Peel with Gregor and Seravalli in the complete interview at