Ron MacLean – Public Enemy #1

At least Ron isn’t looking down in this picture.

Ron MacLean, less than 48 hours after airing an incredibly inflammatory segment on Alex Burrows dealing with Stephane Auger incident, appeared on TEAM1040 to discuss and defend his side of the story.

Ron MacLean spoke with Pratt & Taylor earlier this afternoon to talk about his segment that aired during Hockey Night in Canada. His arguments did nothing to really to defend his piece. Rather, he tried to make it seem like he had produced a piece that was trying to get at the heart of the matter. MacLean explained that he was trying to show that the real issue at hand was whether the NHL’s method of disciplining notorious or repeat offenders. The segment that he aired did not accomplish that at all.

His piece did nothing but try to paint Burrows as the bad guy. Burrows’ on-ice activity is totally irrelevant. The real issue at hand was whether Auger brought a vendetta for Burrows onto the ice, and whether Auger told Burrows he was "going to get him".

Colin Campbell talked to Auger at length before Saturday’s game, and stated that the conversation between Auger and Burrows happened almost exactly as Burrows claimed. The only point of disagreement was that Burrows said Auger tolks him he would "get him", and Auger denied that.

Ron MacLean let his bias as a former referee color his judgment of the officiating fraternity and his public statement about this issue was incredibly one sided. Furthermore, while MacLean was on Vancouver radio this afternoon, he pulled off the best spin doctoring this town has heard in quite some time. If MacLean had gone on-air on Hockey Night in Canada and said what he said on TEAM 1040 this afternoon, I wouldn’t have too much of a problem with it. The problem is that the two segments were almost totally unrelated. His time on HNIC was spent assassinating Burrows’ character and did nothing to answer the question at hand (Did Auger have a personal vendetta and tell Burrows he was going to "get him"?). His time on TEAM1040 was spent deflecting and redirecting questions that were meant to answer the original question.

If he had simply gone on air and spoke his peace as he did on TEAM1040, he would have come out okay. Instead, he did nothing to clear the air about his original segment. I have no problem with MacLean having a opinion on this matter. He’s entitled to it. His problem is that his piece on Hockey Night in Canada was on a tangent to the issue, and he used that time to defend his referee brother.

Ron MacLean – if you’re reading (and I’m sure that you are) – you should have never aired such a poorly thought-out segment on Hockey Night in Canada.