Brampton Battalion coach and director of hockey operations Stan ButlerCoaches never seem to win when they cross the fine line from riding referees to doing it in a way that shows up those in authority. The Ontario Hockey League showed that coaches are just as subject to severe suspensions as players, handing down an eight-game ban to Brampton Battation bench boss Stan Butler for a two-part tirade that began on the ice last Sunday and then resumed in a hallway.
It's a pretty stiff punishment, three more games than Niagara's Marty Williamson received last season for losing it during a game. Coaches in a playoff chase will always act like they have to do whatever it takes to keep their team from getting jammed. The OHL takes a dim view of it, though when a coach comes on the ice to yell at officials in front the entire rink (4:45 in video). It goes right to the heart of their integrity, don't you know. In other words, the league is making an example of Butler at a point in the season when many coaches might have a lower boiling point about officials' calls. That doesn't excuse it in full, though.
"I'm very disappointed with the decision," said Butler, who received two game misconducts for abuse of an official after haranguing referee Mike Marley on the ice and in a Powerade Centre corridor following the Battalion's 2-1 victory.
Read More »from OHL: Butler gets 8 games for ref tirade; will Battalion lose momentum?
Butler was incensed that Sudbury's Joshua Leivo didn't receive an instigating penalty for starting a fight with Cameron Wind at 8:36 of the third period after Wind made a legal check on Michael Sgarbossa. (Battalion press release)