Race for the Rocket: Controversy abounds!

Sidney Crosby: 49? goals, 2 games remaining.
Alex Ovechkin: 48 goals, 2 games remaining.
Steven Stamkos: 48 goals, 2 games remaining.

Oh, it’s getting interesting now.

The neverending rivalry between Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin could reach another level tonight after Crosby scored what seemed to be goals to take a commanding lead in the race for the Rocket Richard Trophy.

The controversy stems from what seemed to be the 50th goal by Crosby, which appeared to go into the net off Bill Guerin’s hip. The goal was scored as Crosby’s, and instantly there were calls that the NHL’s conspiracy wheels were turning once more in favor of Sidney Crosby.

Here’s video of the play:

The entire internet exploded over Crosby’s first 50 goal season, with NHL.com putting up a game story touting that very fact.

But according to the NHL.com boxscore, the goal has since been changed to Bill Guerin’s. 

For now, we’re going under the assumption that Crosby has just a one goal lead over Ovechkin and Stamkos.

[Update: Dan Bylsma said in his press conference after the game that Sidney Crosby stated that the puck went off Bill Guerin. The goal goes to Guerin.]

It should be interesting to see how all three handle the race in the final two games. Crosby and the Penguins still have something to play for as they fight for playoff positioning, but the Capitals and Lightning are just playing out the season.

This means that Stamkos and Ovechkin just let loose with as many shots as they could possibly work into a game. Forget about passing, just put the puck on net as much as possible.

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    Getzlaf didn’t love the ‘dead’ atmosphere at Coyotes game

    Martin Erat, Ryan Getzlaf
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    Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf wasn’t impressed with at least two things last night in Arizona:

    1. His team’s performance in a 4-2 loss to the Coyotes.
    2. The atmosphere inside Gila River Arena, where the announced attendance was just 11,578.

    “It’s hard. When you come into a building … it’s dead,” Getzlaf told the O.C. Register. “Nothing against the fans. It’s hard to fill a big building like this and have the amount of people in it to build your energy. So you have to do it yourself. You have to be ready when you step on the ice. I thought we came out flat.”

    Anaheim’s record fell to 8-11-4 with the defeat.

    The Coyotes’ average attendance also fell, to 13,144 in eight games.

    Jarred Tinordi becomes the latest youngster to be sent to the AHL for ‘conditioning’

    Jarred Tinordi, Brendan Gallagher
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    Like Frank Corrado (see here), Tomas Jurco (see here), Stanislav Galiev (see here), and Patrik Nemeth (see here) before him, Canadiens defenseman Jarred Tinordi is off to the AHL for a conditioning stint.

    Tinordi, 23, has yet to play a single game for the Habs this season; however, because he’s no longer exempt from waivers, the former first-round pick has remained on Montreal’s roster.

    It’s an issue that’s received a good deal of attention lately. Some believe the league should do something about it, lest more young players get “stuck” in the NHL.

    Tinordi will only be allowed to spend two weeks in St. John’s, as per the rules of his conditioning loan.

    Safe to say, if you’re an NHL general manager who thinks Tinordi still has potential, Marc Bergevin would welcome your best offer.

    Stars place Lehtonen on IR, call up Campbell and Nemeth

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    Kari Lehtonen will miss at least a few games with the upper-body injury he suffered the other night against Ottawa. The Dallas Stars announced today that they’ve placed the 32-year-old goalie on injured reserve, retroactive to Tuesday.

    With Lehtonen out, Jack Campbell has been called up from AHL Texas to be Antti Niemi‘s backup. The Stars host Vancouver Friday, with a game at Minnesota Saturday.

    Campbell, the 11th overall pick in the 2010 draft, has struggled in the AHL this season, going 3-3-0 with an .873 save percentage.

    The Stars have also recalled defenseman Patrik Nemeth after the 23-year-old completed his 14-day conditioning assignment.

    Related: Campbell credits ECHL stint for turning his game around

    Gleason ends tryout with ‘Canes

    Tim Gleason, David Desharnais
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    Tim Gleason has likely played his last NHL game. The 32-year-old defenseman has informed the Carolina Hurricanes that he no longer wishes to continue his professional tryout.

    “Tim informed us today he wasn’t going to continue to pursue his tryout,” said GM Ron Francis, per the club’s website. “He looked and felt good physically, but didn’t feel up to the grind of the NHL mentally.”

    Gleason started last season with Carolina before he was traded to Washington in February.

    In his career, he’s played 727 NHL games, plus 32 more in the playoffs.