Sports Outside the Beltway

FSN Pittsburgh suspends hockey producer

A delayed replay in a game played last Thursday is the cause for this action. From AP-

FSN Pittsburgh has indefinitely suspended a longtime hockey producer for not quickly showing a replay that could have caused a short-handed goal to be awarded to Flyers forward Simon Gagne against the Penguins on Thursday.

The producer, Lowell MacDonald Jr., is the one-time lead hockey producer at ESPN and is the son of former Penguins forward Lowell MacDonald.

Gagne’s shot appeared to cross the goal line while Penguins goalie Brent Johnson was covering it during the second period of the Flyers’ 7-4 victory, but the on-ice officials did not signal a goal. TV replays made available to NHL officials in Toronto were inconclusive.

Moments after play resumed, FSN Pittsburgh aired a replay from an overhead camera that showed the puck crossing the goal line. A call cannot be reversed by use of replay once play has started.

TV rights holders are required to make available all angles of a disputed play. Comcast Sports Net Philadelphia also aired the game, but only FSN Pittsburgh’s telecast contained video from the overhead camera.

FSN Pittsburgh, which carries all Penguins game except those televised by NBC and Versus, said in a statement Tuesday that there “is nothing more important than the integrity of the game.”

Penguin management supported FSN Pittsburgh’s decision saying ‘The integrity of the game is paramount.”

I agree with that statement but have a question. Why is a person like Lowell MacDonald Jr., with deep ties to the Penguins(His father played for the team for a almost a decade), allowed to produce broadcasts whose video can be used to sustain or overturn referee decisions? There was a potential for problems that all parties should have known of in advance.

I’m not saying McDonald did anything wrong, just that he shouldn’t have been put in a situation where it can appear he did. Because to maintain the integrity of the game requires there be no one with strong biases in a position to cause damage to it.

Related Stories:
Recent Stories:

Comments are Closed


Visitors Since Feb. 4, 2003

All original content copyright 2003-2008 by OTB Media. All rights reserved.