Study: French-speaking hockey refs call more penalties on English-speaking players

A math professor in Ontario says there’s a significant bias in refereeing in the National Hockey League. English players get whistled for penalties at a greater rate than French-speaking players.

“English, French, European and International players have found that French referees tend to call more penalties on English players, as compared to French players,” Kevin Mongeon, of Brock University, tells the CBC.

“When two French referees are on the ice, English players get called for more penalties compared to French players,” Mongeon said, adding that the research is consistent with previous studies that revealed French-English bias in the NHL.

But so far there is no corresponding research on whether English-speaking refs call more penalties on French-speaking players.

The data set used in the study involved 2.6 million shifts.