It’s a Canadian birthright to complain about officiating in hockey, but what transpired in Game 1 between the Blues and Canucks cannot be allowed to continue.

Teams fight too hard for too long to have the results potentially tainted by unsatisfactory refereeing. That’s not to say that Dan O’Halloran and Chris Lee were in error on every infraction, but the inconsistency that permeated the series opener was unacceptable.

Games are decided by the slimmest of margins in this age of parity among teams, and too many unsubstantiated calls compromise the integrity of the outcome.

No one is suggesting that we revert to a time when a penalty is only awarded once a stretcher makes an appearance, but power plays need not be handed out like election flyers.

• Applause is in order for the Vancouver Giants after outlasting the Spokane Chiefs to advance to the third round of the WHL playoffs. In the past four years, the Giants have won a Memorial Cup, a WHL championship and a total of 10 playoff series. Owner Ron Toigo, GM Scott Bonner and coach Don Hay are to be commended, as those feats rarely happen in junior hockey because of yearly roster turnover. The Giants open the third round tomorrow at the Pacific Coliseum against the Kelowna Rockets.

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