Kelowna native Steve Papp is hanging up the skates.
The referee officiated his final Western Hockey League (WHL) game on Tuesday night, game three between the Kelowna Rockets and Seattle Thunderbirds.
I want to congratulate Kelowna's Steve Papp for his dedication and passion for referring in @TheWHL. Nice send-off at Prospera Place last night, with Papp officiating his final scheduled game in Kelowna. Papp's dad called play-by-play with the Kelowna Spartans back in the day. pic.twitter.com/jJC4hY8PwT— Regan Bartel (@Reganrant) April 5, 2023
Now 39 years old, Papp has been with the WHL for 19 seasons, with 17 of them as a referee. Back in 2019, he was the recipient of the WHL Milestone Award.
He has reffed in more than 700 WHL games, including many conference championships, championships, and Memorial Cups. He also was a referee at the 2014 World Junior Hockey Championships.