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in the Crease
Pierre McGuire
April 29, 2002
Two of the NHL's most senior referees, Terry Gregson, 48, and Paul Stewart, 47, were not chosen to officiate in the playoffs. NHL director of officiating Andy Van Hellemond was worried that Gregson and Stewart, who worked 72 and 62 games, respectively, in the regular season, were not quick enough in the corners to avoid interrupting the flow of play. Van Hellemond, who has been concerned that the league's best officials are graying, also wanted to fast-forward the development of his best young referees, such as Kevin Pollock, 32, Stephane Auger, 31, and Marc Joannette, 33. Entering the 2001-02 regular season, none of those three had worked more than 80 NHL games....
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April 29, 2002

In The Crease

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Two of the NHL's most senior referees, Terry Gregson, 48, and Paul Stewart, 47, were not chosen to officiate in the playoffs. NHL director of officiating Andy Van Hellemond was worried that Gregson and Stewart, who worked 72 and 62 games, respectively, in the regular season, were not quick enough in the corners to avoid interrupting the flow of play. Van Hellemond, who has been concerned that the league's best officials are graying, also wanted to fast-forward the development of his best young referees, such as Kevin Pollock, 32, Stephane Auger, 31, and Marc Joannette, 33. Entering the 2001-02 regular season, none of those three had worked more than 80 NHL games....

Former NFL quarterback Bernie Kosar, who bought a minority interest in the Panthers last year, is about to end his tenure as an NHL owner. He and majority owner Alan Cohen have bickered about how to run the franchise, and Kosar is set to sell his interest in the team....

The Thrashers' electrifying 19-year-old rookie wing, Ilya Kovalchuk, who scored 29 goals before sustaining a season-ending shoulder injury on March 10, will earn about $4.4 million in '01-02, but that hasn't stopped his agent, Jay Grossman, from trying to get more money for his client. Kovalchuk's three-year contract calls for a $250,000 bonus if he scores 30 or more goals in a season, a plateau he had seemed certain to reach before he was sidelined in Atlanta's 65th game. Last week Grossman asked Thrashers general manager Don Waddell to pay the bonus, but Waddell declined.

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