Our first blog post!
I guess this is our first official blog post. I should probably take the opportunity to explain what Team Stripes is all about.
Basically, I have been playing hockey my whole life, and got the opportunity to play prep school in the United States and junior in Canada. After playing, I thought refereeing would be a good part-time job. I always enjoyed the rules element of the game – and would generally ask questions of the referees when I got the chance. No idea why I liked it so much. I can even remember some games where I knew the rules better than some of our refs, and would use that to get a bit of an advantage.
Anyways, after starting with refereeing, which I did in Ottawa (where I went to university), I got the opportunity to move-up the ranks quickly. Within several years I got to work Jr. A, university (CIS) and some minor professional hockey. The thing is, even at this point I feel like I know very little. Every game I am getting more advice from those that have seen it all.
I thought it was sort of an obligation to reach out to more referees and share this information, which is where Team Stripes came from. Because we really are a team out there. There are no home games for us.
We are starting out by offering apparel for those based out of Ottawa, to keep us afloat and to foster a team atmosphere between all our referees.
When I say we, I mean myself and my good friend and long-time referee Daniel Spence. We want to expand this idea and build a community that can really help referees, in distinct types of ways.
While providing apparel to associations in Ottawa is a start, we are soon going to start publishing blog posts and information from a wide range of referees, ranging from newbies to old veterans to the next stars of the NHL. The goal is to share information and memories, both good and bad, to gain insight into becoming a better referee. Along with that, we are going to be pushing to interview as many high-level officials as possible.
We don’t know how far the journey will take us – but we hope that you will be able to learn with us and improve as an official.
Yours in Stripes,