Rooney Returns Home For Classic

By John McGourty Staff Writer

BOSTON – If former ECHL referee Chris Rooney hears a fan at the 2010 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic Friday (1 p.m. ET, NBC, CBC, RDS) call out, “Wicked bad call, ref,” he’ll feel right at home.

Rooney, from South Boston, was chosen to referee the game along with veteran Kerry Fraser. New Hampshire’s Brian Murphy will be one of the linesmen, along with Lyle Seitz.

The whole crew is looking forward to the game with great excitement. They know they’ll be part of a rare historical event and they’re soaking up every minute of the pre-game excitement. Thursday, they were asked by NHL ice guru Dan Craig to test the ice and gave him their evaluations.

Boston is a consolidated city, so neighborhoods like Dorchester, Mattapan, Hyde Park were once separate cities. To say you’re from South Boston or Dorchester is overly broad and the city has such a large Catholic population that specific area identity is by parish. So, when Rooney said South Boston, he was asked, “Gate of Heaven?”

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