NHL Referee's Family Allegedly Threatened by Radical Leafs Fans

Published May 7, 2023 at 3:50 PM
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Extreme Sports Fandom: Crossing the Line

In the realm of sports fandom, some individuals go to great lengths to defend their team. Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star reports that Toronto Maple Leafs fans threatened the family of NHL referee Wes McCauley during their first-round series with Tampa Bay.

Game 3 Incident: Threats Against McCauley's Family



The threats followed Game 3, in which Michael Bunting delivered a hit on Tampa Bay Lightning's Erik Cernak, resulting in a three-game suspension. The Toronto Star quotes a league source as saying,


A league source told the Star that there were threats made against McCauley's family that night, feeding off the frenzy that McCauley and Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe have a long-standing beef that goes beyond the ice.

Keefe and McCauley: No Animosity



Despite the alleged animosity, when it was announced that McCauley would be officiating Toronto's game against the Florida Panthers, head coach Sheldon Keefe denied any conflict between them, stating that McCauley has always treated him like a professional, and that at the end of the day, they respect each other.


Passion Has Its Limits



Threatening athletes, referees, or their families is never acceptable behaviour and has zero excuses. It is a disgusting display of petty behaviour and how some fans need to acknowledge that hockey is a sport, and it is not worth threatening someone's well being over a sport.

While passionate hockey fans are an asset to the sport, they must also respect boundaries and avoid going too far.

As Read on MarkerZone - Leafs Fans Reportedly Threatened Family of NHL Referee
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May 7   |   131 answers
NHL Referee's Family Allegedly Threatened by Radical Leafs Fans

Should the people who threatened McCauley be held criminally accountable?

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