May 30, 1952 |
Sarnia, Ontario, Canada
|Occupation||NHL official (1973 - 2010)|
|Children||Marcie Dumas, Ryan Fraser, Jessica Fraser, Matthew Fraser, Ian Fraser, Jaime Fraser, Kara Fraser|
Kerry Fraser (born May 30, 1952) is a hockey analyst, spokesman for the CNIB, and former senior referee in the National Hockey League, having joined the National Hockey League Officials Association on September 1, 1973, and officiating his first game in the 1980–81 season. Kerry continues his involvement in the NHL community by participating in a TSN.ca blog named "C'Mon Ref!" where he applies his NHL referee experience to controversial calls in current NHL games. Fraser's father, Hilton "Hilt" Fraser, had him skating at 15 months old, chasing pucks at 11, and refereeing by age 15.
At just 5 feet 7 inches (1.70 m) tall, Fraser says that his height contributed to his longevity in the league by forcing him to "develop techniques to ... avoid being hit" Fraser currently holds the record for most NHL regular season and playoff games refereed.
He has called over 1,900 regular season games, thirteen Stanley Cup Finals, and over 261 Stanley Cup playoff games since joining the league in 1980. He officiated the 1996 World Cup of Hockey and the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, which was the first Olympic tournament to feature NHL participation. He also officiated two All-Star Games and the 2010 NHL Winter Classic. From the 1994-95 season until his retirement, he wore uniform number 2. He was one of the last three NHL officials covered by the grandfather clause that allowed him to go without a helmet, thus allowing his signature bouffant hairstyle. However, with the ratification of the new NHL Officials Association collective bargaining agreement on March 21, 2006, all officials, including Fraser, were required to wear a helmet.
Fraser missed the beginning of the 2006–07 season while recovering from an incident in September 2006. He was helping his daughter move and was carrying a television down the steps when he lost his footing; his big toe was shattered. Before returning to referee NHL games, Fraser officiated some AHL games alongside his son, Ryan. In November 2006, TSN's James Duthie, along with Kerry Fraser, created a short mock interview/documentary claiming that Fraser missed the start of the season because he was afraid that wearing a helmet would mess up his hair. Fraser's first game back with the NHL was Tampa Bay Lightning at Boston Bruins on November 30, 2006.
Fraser retired from officiating after the NHL 2009–10 season working his last game on April 11, 2010, in Philadelphia as the Philadelphia Flyers hosted the New York Rangers at the Wachovia Center, which is the closest NHL arena to his residence in New Jersey. Also during the season he worked a number of important games as the league's most senior referee including the Winter Classic.
Fraser was voted the "most consistent" referee in a December 2005 poll of NHL players by The Hockey News.
Fraser was awarded the 2007 Special Achievement Award by the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association. In 2009, Fraser was named to the Ontario Minor Hockey Association's All-Time team as a referee. A banner was raised at the home arena of the Ontario Hockey League's Sarnia Sting in his hometown to mark the honour.
- "Featured officials: Kerry Fraser". NHL Officials Association. Retrieved 2007-10-26.
- "Fraser sets Officiating Record". NHL Officials Association. 2003-03-27. Retrieved 2008-02-13.
- "Referees Have Fathers Too". Sports Illustrated. 1998-11-03. Retrieved 2008-02-13.
- "Kerry works milestone". NHL Officials Association. 2003-12-03. Retrieved 2007-10-26.
- Profile, TSN.ca; accessed February 23, 2015.
- Video on YouTube
- Leahy, Sean (August 6, 2009). "Referee Kerry Fraser addresses non-call on Gretzky, hair secrets". Yahoo! Sports.
- ESPN - Player Poll, sports.espn.go.com; accessed February 23, 2015.
- Profile, That's Hockey 2Nite homepage; accessed February 23, 2015.
- Former NHL referee recalls how God changed his heart, catholicnewsagency.com; accessed February 23, 2015.