Strange But True: Good-By, Ref

The referee in hockey can throw a player out of a game. Once, however, a referee took himself out of the game instead.

In the early years of the century a Montreal team was playing Winnipeg in a Stanley Cup game. Referee J.A. Findlay imposed a penalty on a Montreal player. The Montreal players complained bitterly about the decision. After referee Findlay listened for a while, he announced that he had been “insulted.” Findlay went home before anyone could stop him.

Some hockey officials jumped into a sleigh and went to Findlay’s house. They coaxed and pleaded, and finally the referee agreed to return to the arena. By the time he got back, however, some of the Winnipeg players had already changed into street clothes and disappeared. The game was never completed.

From The Giant Book of Strange But True Sports Stories by Howard Liss. Illustrations by Joe Mathieu.

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When you can walk its length, and leave no trace, you will have learned.

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