penalty for executing the Randy Savage elbow drop.
While it's always nice to see a barrier broken, the story also illustrates the difficulty the league is having in filling out its referee roster. The league needs more officials than ever thanks to expansion and the two-man system, but with several veterans retiring it's become a significant challenge to find enough qualified referee.
That's why I'm happy to report that the league is getting creative. Looking outside of North America is just the first step in a detailed new program the league has launched to help it attract and retain enough referees.
Other steps include:
- The league will no longer limit hiring pool to officials who hate the Vancouver Canucks; just detesting them will now be good enough.
- Officials will now be allowed to supplement income by keeping all the change Flyers fans throw at them.
- The league will no longer cut costs on uniforms by only hiring officials who are already employees of Foot Locker.
- Get with the times by allowing all referees to telecommute from home once a week.
- Reduce the length of the overly complicated application form by getting rid of questions like "Can you tell the difference between the numbers 32 and 36?", since really, when is that ever going to come up?
- Maybe return the calls of this Tim Donaghy guy; he claims to have all sort of ideas about how officials can increase their income.
- Install a pre-game open bar in the officials' locker room, replacing the current cash bar.
- Referees will now be allowed to order an in-depth video replay review of those two hot chicks in section 203.
- Start paying every official a $10 cash bonus for every too-many-men penalty they call. (Note: Rule enacted prior to 2010 playoffs.)
- In addition to the special plaque and the Swiss Chalet gift certificate, the employee of month will now also earn one free swing at Maxim Lapierre.
- The popular "Kiss Cam" feature will no longer include hidden camera footage form the previous night of the home team's star player making out with the referee's wife.
- Outsource the whole damn thing to India.