This is a story that is sure to get bigger in the days to come, and has a strong Boston angle to it.

Colin Campbell, who serves as Senior Vice President and Director of Hockey Operations for the NHL – and chief disciplinarian – seems to have had a grudge against Bruins center Marc Savard, and that may have played a role in Campbell’s decision not to suspend Matt Cooke for his cheap hit on Savard which has essentially halted his NHL career. The story is based on emails from and to Campbell.

See the following links for more:

Leaked emails suggest Colin Campbell held bias against Savard, Bruins – (New England Hockey Journal)

Have Savard emails exposed NHL’s Colin Campbell as corrupt? (Yahoo! Sports)

Who did Colin Campbell call “a little fake artist”? (Cached version of the site that originally broke this story – – the site is down from so much traffic.)

A complication to this is that ironically, Campbell’s son, Gregory, now plays for the Bruins. Colin Campbell apparently also has a history of trying to intefere in matters to defend his son.


32 thoughts on “Colin Campbell Called Marc Savard a “little fake artist”

      1. ahhhh….gee Jack, maybe your new to these parts. Hockey is actually pretty popular around here… buzz off

      2. Sorry, Lou, he's right. Bruins are a joke. Fourth class sport. How many 3-1 or 3-0 collapses do you need to see?

        1. They lost in the playoffs after having a 3-0 lead because of too many men on the ice…Hahaha! The Jacobs family thanks you very much for your support and dollars. Mostly just your dollars.

  1. Just like Savard was faking when cross checked so hard it broke bone in vertebrae in previous year's playoffs< Again no call, no suspension>

  2. Colin Campbell is in no posiiton to have personal feelings come in to play. He has to realize that this hit was serious and severely injured another player. Cooke got his when Thornton got him. Cooke does need another beating, that's for sure. Not a big fan of Campbell or Bettman or the Bruins for that sake. I'm a Sabres fan…I just hate seeing good players go out of the league due to injury ro a cheap shot. By the way, I really hate the Pens and Sidney "the little bitch" Crosby …..

  3. Colin needs to step down. There is no place in the NHL for such blatant bias especially on the part of the man who is responsible for disciplining all players. The NHLPA needs to jump on this and now. It may not be possible to get rid of that moron Bettman, but Campbell needs to go.

  4. So soon does everyone forget. Before that hit, Richards did the same to David Booth, and because his son played on the Panthers, Colin stepped aside and let someone else decide if there was to be a suspension, and there wasn't. When Cook hit Savard he had no choice, if Richards wasn't suspended, neither could Cook, otherwise it would have been an un-even application of punishment and Penguin fans would have been up in arms. I guess it better to cast aspirations on his motives then to look at the facts.

      1. I'm not being a fool, just realistic. You can't have a double standard for rule enforcement. In failing to suspend Richards for his hit, meant that Cook didn't get it for this. Had they tried to suspend Cook he could have easily pointed out the non punishment of Richards to dispute any punishment. You can't selectively punish people. The only upside is the league's new head hit rule.

        1. Again, you're excusing one bad decision with another. That's terrible reasoning.

          Further, as mandb97 points out, the Cooke hit wasn't even really that similar, as he came in from the blind side with an elbow to the temple. You don't need new rules for that to suspend him under – take your pick of roughing, hit from behind, elbowing, intent to injure, etc.

          Campbell didn't suspend Cooke because he apparently dislikes Savard. The Booth situation was simply convenient cover.

          1. I'm sorry you can't see the facts.

            FIrst, Cooke didn't extend his elbow out to hit Savard, Cooke's arm was down at this side for the impact, that means no elbowing. (check the NHL rules). Richards got a game misconduct for his hit, Cooke nothing. So are you honestly going to tell me that when a player that gets a game misconduct for a hit doesn't get a suspension, one who didn't even get penalized should?

            You can take all your arguments for the suspension, and apply them for Richards, and you have even a stronger case for a Richard's suspension. It didn't happen. Saying it didn't happen because Campbell didn't like Savard is false, it didn't happen because there wasn't rules protecting the players.

          2. Look again. That's his elbow that he hits Savard with and that you see fly up after the check. He chicken winged him.

            The ref said after that he thought Cooke was "finishing his check". Obviously he's mistaken, but you're again excusing one bad decision with another. And even if we stipulate that it wasn't Cooke's elbow (it was), that's still roughing/hit-from-behind/intent-to-injure. Not getting a suspension is absolutely absurd.

            There's the Richards hit. Borderline. the misconduct penalty is a joke. His elbow never comes up, Booth kind of ducks down a little, hence the contact to the head. Only a non-hockey fan would equate the two hits. Or Colin Campbell. Or Barry Melrose. Nice company you have there.

          3. I see, you loose the argument and start with the insults. I've said all along, BOTH players deserved suspensions, but as neither got one it doesn't show bias on the part of Campbell, it showed a hole in the NHL's rules that allowed cheap shots to the heads of players going unpunished. You can't show a string of people being punished for this, then Cooke magically escaping punishment for it, (which you need to in order to show bias) so instead you start tossing out straw-men.

          4. I realize I'm simply wasting my time here, but whatever. I didn't insult you, unless saying you aren't much of a fan is an insult. What's that about straw men now?

            First, it's "lose", not "loose". For Christ's sake, learn the language.

            It amazes me – positively amazes me – that people can see a blatant elbow to the head and still think that it gets through some "hole" in the rules. You're flat out ignoring everything else I posted – the fact that it's still an intent to injure/roughing/hit from behind – and focusing on one aspect of the argument (perceived bias).

            The two hits in question here are miles apart. They're not the same in any universe. One involves an obvious cheap shot, the other a borderline one, each with completely different circumstances. Equating the two is the proverbial apples and hand grenades.

            I'm done with this dead horse. You are wrong on the facts at hand. Demonstrably and painfully wrong. Your inane defense of Colin Campbell and his trail of bias and stupid decisions is a Baghdad Bob move.

            "There are no Americans at the airport! Matt Cooke didn't elbow Marc Savard in the head!"

    1. James the problem was that replay after replay showed that Cooke hit Savard with an elbow. The only two people who believed the hit was not dirty was Campbell, who somehow said it was a shoulder, and Barry Melrose who inexplicably blamed Savard for not keeping his head up even though he had just followed through on his shot and was completely defenseless. For Campbell to say it was a shoulder means he has better eyes than every other human being who saw the same play. When it comes out that Campbell believes Savard is a faker, then he seemingly is showing revenge for something that happened to his son two years previously. He would have been much better off letting someone independent make the call if he knew that he could not objectively do it himself.

      1. It was a dirty hit, so was the one on Booth. This has noting to do with Campbell believing Savard is a faker, as everyone knew Savard was really hurt. If Richards was suspended for his hit on Booth, so would have been Cooke. Richards was not, so neither was Cooke. Now, the league made sure these hits get punished.

        1. James, first of all, the hit on Booth was violent but it was clean. Richards hit Booth with his shoulder, which at the time would not draw a penalty. If you look at the Savard hit, Cooke took him out with an elbow which should have been called on ice then should have been dealt with by the league offices afterwords.

          Secondly, as far as this story goes, there is no record of Campbell having an issue with either Booth or Richards. He obviously has one with Savard. This means his judgment is impaired because of his bias. He did not like Savard when he coached him in New York and he did not like him even more when a penalty for high sticking was called against his son when he hit Savard. James I can't explain it to you any better how this seems like a conflict of interest.

          1. Elbowing in the NHL is the extension of the elbow to hit another player, Cooke did not do this. Cooke's arm was plastered to his side during the hit. If Richard's hit was clean ( it wasn't) why did he get a game misconduct? You are searching for something that isn't there. IF Richards was suspended, and Cooke was not, then you have a case. As a matter of fact, you can go back further with other players taking head shots not getting suspended. (Dough Weight on Brandon Sutter) One shouldn't question Campbell on the call, one should question the NHL on why it took so long to address those hits.

          2. James your opinion on the hits are fine. I disagree with them though. The big issue you fail to understand is that Campbell already had a strong bias against Marc Savard. He should have recused himself from any punishment decision regarding Savard. With what we know from the e-mails, my belief is that had Savard delivered the blow to Cooke he would have been suspended for a minimum of twenty games. It just looks really bad.

          3. Had other players been punished for this and Cooke was not, then you would have a case, as no other player was punished for this, you do not. I'm sure Campbell has plenty of opinions on a whole bunch of players. Just because we know what he thinks of Savard doesn't mean that colored the punishment of Cooke. Showing that Cooke's lack of punishment for the hit was outside the norm would. As I have pointed out, it was not.

          4. Your right, he may have a lot of opinions on other players. The difference is that we know through the emails that he has strong dislike of Savard. It is on the record. He needed to recuse himself of any decisions regarding Marc Savard and discipline. You also continue to say that Cooke's hit was the same as Richards when in fact they are not. Richards used his shoulder which, by rule, was legal. He was ejected but it was the wrong call. The league said as much by not suspending him. Replay clearly shows Cooke's hit was an elbow which the referee missed and Campbell inexplicably said was a shoulder. Now through the emails we know why Campbell would have not "seen" an elbow.

          5. I don't think Cooke's hit was with the elbow, it looks like Savard's head is impacted by Cooke's arm right below the shoulder. What I find funny is the elbow/shoulder argument funny, as if slamming someone in the head with a shoulder is "acceptable" while using an elbow isn't. As an old player of contact sports, I knew full well if I wanted to lay into someone, it was the shoulder, backed by the rest of my body, that had the most impact. Judging by the damage done to Savard by the hit, it was much more than an elbow that contacted his head, an elbow wouldn't have done that kind of damage. This is coming from someone that has taken a few shots over the years. IMHO BOTH hits were wrong, BOTH players should have been suspended. I'm not going to try and split hairs over elbow/shoulder. This was roughing with intent to injure, the league was way remiss in not addressing head shots before Booth and Savard got major concussions. I see quite a few people are trying to nail Campbell to the cross over this, I think some people are doing just what they accuse Campbell of.

          6. James I'll leave it on this note. We will agree to disagree on the hits. The hits are not even the issue. The issue is that Colin Campbell has an obvious bias toward Savard. He should never have allowed himself to make any decisions on discipline with regards to Marc Savard. Frankly, I have never seen a sports organization make more mistakes in their handling of all issues like the NHL. If the NFL has a lockout then you can give them a ten on the stupidity meter. It's a number the NHL continually reaches year after year.

  5. What really matters is here we have a vivid pattern of demonstrated bias based on the player and the official (Campbell's) relationship with Savard when coaching him. A clear conflict of ionterest, but Campbell feels so secure in his job that he can write this junk, then release it toi "back up his view." Furthermore, the league disciplinarian was in a position to request medical information about Savard's condition in fact. He chose not to and continued to malign the polayer in a manner that would be actionable in any other sport. But Daly says the league has every confidence in Campbell. I am sure they have, just a bunch of "old boys" doing what they doi, arrogant and indifferent to the pain and suffering of the chattels who take the high sticks and ;punches to p;ay their inflated salaries. Simply sad, un professional and all under the watch of the sneaky-sam lawyer Bettman. Sadder.

  6. If all the information is factual then the NHL has only one recourse after the investagation is complete. There will be an investagation won't there ? Lifelongbruinsfan

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