SUN Hockey Pool

Campbell no Judge Judy

GEORGE GROSS -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:56 AM ET

Judge Judy and Judge Joe Brown can make their rulings on any case they see in 10 minutes. You can see it all unfold on your television set.

The NHL's "hanging judge," senior executive vice-president and director of hockey operations -- Colin Campbell -- follows the teachings of Socrates and makes his decisions after considerable analysis of the case and consultations with senior hockey officials. The decision isn't made in 10 minutes and you certainly can't watch the process on your TV. So, I tried to get an insight concerning the background analysis that precedes the announcement of the verdicts.

"I try to watch what's happening on the ice and then discuss it with Mike Murphy (former Maple Leaf head coach and now vice-president of hockey operations), Kris King (former Maple Leaf player and now director of hockey operations) and Jim Gregory (former Maple Leaf general manager and now senior vice-president of NHL hockey operations)," offered Campbell.

"There is a lot happening in NHL hockey these days. You have a lot of games and even some outdoor games. We are trying to keep discipline in the game. Then we have to keep an eye on the length of the game, actions of the game officials because people can see the games in super slow motion and in high definition."

Yeah, but how do you decide whether a player should get suspended, and, if so, for how many games, or should he just get fined?

"You have to evaluate the severity of a player's action," Campbell responded. "You have to ascertain who is hitting whom. Then, whether the player who is hitting is a repeat offender, or was it an accidental hit. The hitting increases when it comes, for instance, to the Battle of Ontario, or the Montreal-Boston rivalry.

"Moreover, because we are not on the ice, we interview the player and his manager. We then read the referee's report because there are so many factors involved. Was it a stick infraction with the intent to injure, or just an accident."

Gregory, the man who saved Harold Ballard's life on a couple of occasions (but that's another story) said Campbell agonizes over every issue before he makes a decision.

If I were the one up for "sentencing", I'd prefer to get it over with right away a la Judges Judy and Joe Brown. But then again, maybe that's why Campbell makes the players wait -- it gives them time to sweat it out and perhaps review their actions more closely to show restraint in the future.

DISA AND DATA

OPP supremo Julian Fantino will sign his latest book DUTY -- The Life of a Cop tomorrow from 5-7 p.m. in the David Mirvish Books store at 596 Markham Street ... The former demon CBC cameraman, Mort Greenberg, who collected $497,820 for local charities, is a cinch to pass the half million dollar mark this year. Last year, Mort and his friends contributed $7,120 for Variety Village ... The Royal Canadian Golf Association offered two weekly passes for grounds access to every day of the 2008 Canadian Open at Glen Abbey Golf Club, July 21-27 ... The Sun's Andy Donato and his wife, Dianne Jackson, will show their small paintings at the Gallery Wall at 2892 Bloor St. West from December 2 to 12 ... The world television premiere of "JOHNNY LOMBARDI: The Great Communicator" will be shown on Rogers OMNI 1 on Dec. 15 at 9 p.m. The late Johnny Lombardi helped pioneer multicultural broadcasting in Canada and supported the Toronto Italia soccer club in the now defunct Eastern Canada Professional Soccer League ... Jasmine Cull of the Mohawk Mountaineers men's volleyball team was named male athlete of the week for the Canadian Colleges Athletic Association, while Rachel Dubbeldam of the Humber volleyball team took the female honours ... In the men's soccer championship, Champlain defeated Algonquin 3-2 on penalty kicks... The reigning world champion Canadian men's volleyball team has left for Phnom Penh, Cambodia, to compete in the 2007 World Cup. Of the nine selected players, none is from Ontario.


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