Amell set to celebrate this milestone this afternoon in Pittsburgh
This afternoon in Pittsburgh, NHL Linesman Derek Amell will be skating in his 1,500th NHL Regular Season Game. The Pittsburgh Penguins will be hosting the Washington Capitals at the PPG Paints Arena for today’s game. Fellow referees Dan O’Halloran and Dean Morton will be wearing the orange bands for this matchup while his partner on the lines will be veteran linesman Brad Kovachik. The Port Colborne, Ontario native who has worked 7 Stanley Cup Finals to date, worked his first NHL Regular Season Game back on October 11th, 1997 in that same city of Pittsburgh (Carolina Hurricanes vs Penguins) at the old Civic Arena across the street from where he will be achieving this amazing milestone today.
Amell started officiating when he was 21 and in his second year at the Durham College in Oshawa, Ontario taking Chemical Engineering Technology. He used to play hockey with the referee assigner’s son and after running into him, his friend said that his dad was looking for referees. After talking to the assigner he ended up going to the next officiating clinic, got certified and was assigned to Novice out of Harman Arena and went from there. He moved up the ranks pretty quick due to his size and calm demeanor on the ice and he worked his first Ontario Hockey League (OHL) three years later at the age of 24. He worked the OHL for four years as a linesman. On his fourth year, the Montreal Canadiens relocated their American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate team to Hamilton, Ontario creating a need for the AHL to form a staff of local linesmen in the area. Amell was selected along with five other Southern Ontario linesmen to work the games that year. That year he ended up working the OHL Finals and also got the chance to work the AHL Calder Cup Finals because the Hamilton Bulldogs made it to the Final! In the summer of 1997, the National Hockey League offered him a minor league contract (40-40) as a linesman splitting his duties between the AHL and the NHL. He was promoted to a full-time NHL linesman status in the summer of 1998.
Amell also has an impressive resume as an NHL linesman that includes:
– 2004 World Cup of Hockey CAN/USA/FIN/SWE/CZE/GER
– 2011 Winter Classic in Pittsburgh, PA (Washington Capitals vs Pittsburgh Penguins)
– 2012 NHL All-Star Game in Ottawa, Ontario
– 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics
– 2016 World Cup of Hockey in Toronto, Canada
– 2017 Stadium Series in Pittsburgh, PA (Philadelphia Flyers vs Pittsburgh Penguins)
– 210 NHL Playoffs Games worked to date
– 7 Stanley Cup Finals (2009, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018 & 2019)
He was also voted by his peers to sit on the NHLOA executive committee in the fall of 2017, a position that he still occupy as of today.
The NHLOA would like to congratulate linesman Derek Amell for reaching the 1,500 NHL Regular Season Game milestone.