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Editors Note: Big thanks to Majingir for the poll suggestion, PM me any of yours and we'll try to work as many in as possible!

The toughest job in sports is not hitting a baseball or trying to outscore Kevin Durant -- it's enforcing the rules of the game.

Think about it: referees and umpires are only known when they mess up, and when they're doing their job they're more a necessary annoyance -- only there to ensure the game runs smoothly.

Players argue with them. Coaches harass them. Fans shout all sorts of things about their family.

But yet, some leagues tend to have it better than others. In your opnion, which major American sport has the best referees/umpires out there? Is it the MLB? NFL? NHL? NBA?

Sound off by voting in our poll and let us know your rankings 1-4 in the comments!!

Member Comments
# 1 El Comodin24 @ 04/28/14 12:15 PM
NHL, MLB, NFL......................................... NBA.
 
# 2 ehh @ 04/28/14 12:23 PM
Don't know about the best but the NBA has by far the worst.
 
# 3 braves_94 @ 04/28/14 12:27 PM
Pro Wrestling.
 
# 4 canesfins @ 04/28/14 12:28 PM
If I had to pick I would say NHL. I just don't hear about huge blown calls by NHL refs as In the other sports. Maybe I'm just not paying attention enough but that's what it just seems like.
 
# 5 Majingir @ 04/28/14 12:29 PM
Even though I suggested it, I'm still undecided on the best lol. In MLB, the only real time umpires get criticized is for the ball/strike zone, but that obviously impacts a game drastically(being down 1-2 is much different than being up 2-1 in a count and that count could completely change the game).

NHL and NFL refs mostly just get criticized for penalty calls(or miscalls), but that also has huge impact on a game.

NBA refs it's foul calls and things like traveling,out of bounds and so on, but NBA has way more fouls than NHL or NFL has penalties, so it stands out so much more to fans.



In order I'd probably say NHL,MLB,NFL and then NBA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by braves_94
Pro Wrestling.
lol. Though they still do a better job than NBA refs, even though at least 1 WWE ref get knocked out for 5 minutes every month it seems like.
 
# 6 MakePlaysOrDie @ 04/28/14 12:31 PM
I voted NHL for no other reason than the refs allow fights. Guys duke it out, take their time in the penalty box, and get back at it. Pretty cool from a longtime basketball fan perspective. The NBA needs to allow this.
 
# 7 willz1985 @ 04/28/14 12:38 PM
Only one of the four i don't hear about the refs affecting games in a bad way is NHL.

Maybe it has something to do with the eagerness of players wanting to fight i dunno
 
# 8 bcruise @ 04/28/14 12:42 PM
For the sheer number of things and players they have to watch out for (especially in the trenches), I'd say NFL. It's true a lot of that goes uncalled, though.

Then MLB, NHL, and NBA. NHL is worse than you think if you don't pay close enough attention to the sport, trust me.
 
# 9 Dwenny @ 04/28/14 01:04 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcruise
For the sheer number of things and players they have to watch out for (especially in the trenches), I'd say NFL. It's true a lot of that goes uncalled, though.

Then MLB, NHL, and NBA. NHL is worse than you think if you don't pay close enough attention to the sport, trust me.
NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA. Totally agree with you on NHL, bcruise, you beat me to it. So many make up calls, and don't get me started with "Montreal typical."
 
# 10 Money99 @ 04/28/14 01:52 PM
I honestly don't know how anyone can vote for NHL refs as being the best.
For starters, there's two separate rules; regular season and playoffs.
In the playoffs, you don't even need refs because they let everything go.

Case in point; Hawks-Blues game 2. In 2OT, Hawks are on a PP when the Blues clear the puck over the glass - which is a black-and-white penalty for delay of game.
Refs decide to not call it because, as the dogma goes "Let the players decide the game, not the refs".

But what the refs (and everyone else who believes in that crap motto) don't realize is that by NOT calling penalties, they ARE deciding the game.

In the end, there aren't any NHL refs who have the balls to call penalties in big games.
If it's a hook or trip in September, it should be a hook or trip in Triple-OT of Game 7.
 
# 11 mestevo @ 04/28/14 02:32 PM
MLB leading, while 9-14% of all ball/strike calls are incorrect, lol.
 
# 12 jello1717 @ 04/28/14 03:02 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by mestevo
MLB leading, while 9-14% of all ball/strike calls are incorrect, lol.
The poll didn't ask "which sport has good refs."

It asks "which sport has the best" (which of course is a relative question).
 
# 13 Majingir @ 04/28/14 03:05 PM
I guess there's no need for a "which sport has the worst refs" cause this poll shows that answer too lol
 
# 14 ps3veron @ 04/28/14 03:48 PM
Why isn't the MLS on here?

MLB followed by NHL has the best.
 
# 15 Money99 @ 04/28/14 03:52 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThreeKing
I understand the 'dogfight' between Hockey and Baseball, but Hockey has the best refs in my opinion. These guys are like the COMPLETE OPPOSITE of NBA refs, which is a great thing.
NBA refs are really bad, but hockey is a close 2nd.

How many games have you watched where a ref will make a bad call then immediately give a make-up call to even things up?
I've seen games where a team took 3 straight penalties (which they deserved) only to get their own PP on a weak call simply because the refs are always making sure things are even - despite the fact that one team is clearly breaking rules while the other is not.
Or how many times is there a blatant penalty committed, but doesn't get called because it might be a 1-goal game?

I also think it's hilarious how a 'rough' team can play a 'soft' team and yet 9 times out of 10, the two teams will have equal powerplays despite the obvious difference in style of play.
Just look at any regular season boxscore and see how many times one team gets a lopsided amount of PP's compared to the other club. It never happens.
"Everything has to be even in the 'Kiss Your Sister' league where losers get points and everything has to be Even Steven".

NHL refs are the most cowardly officials in all of sports.
They're so afraid to 'decide the game' that they end up doing just that by tucking their balls into their wives purses and swallowing their whistles.
 
# 16 Majingir @ 04/28/14 04:16 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ps3veron
Why isn't the MLS on here?

MLB followed by NHL has the best.
MLS isn't really a major pro sports league.
 
# 17 soonermagic88 @ 04/28/14 04:36 PM
I can't speak for NHL, because i dont really watch except for the playoffs, but the other 3 are all BAD. Mlb is probably the best out of the 3, but NFL is horrible and NBA is far and away the worst.
For that reason, I voted NHL
 
# 18 Ghost Of The Year @ 04/28/14 04:39 PM
I can't bring myself to vote for any umps/refs. They're just a step above telemarketers, used car salesmen and lawyers, in my book.
 
# 19 AntiBandwagoner @ 04/28/14 06:05 PM
The ref is hated in every sport by everyone, and for many good reasons.

The one I personally least hate is the MLB umpire. Not many people watch hockey so I can see why the vote has gone the NHL's way but the hockey refs are nothing but bad.
 
# 20 XXstormmXX @ 04/28/14 06:22 PM
I voted NHL but IDK if they are really the best or if we just don't hear about blown calls by them as much.

NBA is by far the worst though. The refs decide way to many games by not calling obvious things.
 

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