Los Angeles Kings v Ottawa Senators

Photo of the night: Ryan Smyth’s controversial third period no-goal

Tonight’s game between the Kings and Senators in Ottawa featured a pair of dubious goal reviews. One came in the first period when Wayne Simmonds opportunity where he jammed the puck home into an empty net was waived off because Sens defenseman Matt Carkner slid into the post and very well may have helped pull the net off its moorings on purpose. The puck didn’t cross the line before the net came off and the goal was disallowed and confirmed on review.

The bigger story came in the third period with the Kings trailing 3-2 and Jack Johnson’s shot from the point was tipped into the net by Ryan Smyth with three seconds left for the apparent game-tying goal. Referee Eric Furlatt immediately waived the goal off saying Smyth tipped it in with a high stick. Once again the play would go to review and after a lengthy replay, Furlatt’s decision was confirmed. The Kings lost the game and discussion turned to whether or not the right call was made. Submitted for your approval (or not), a single snapshot and a moment in time right after Smyth tipped Johnson’s shot.

The cliché says that “a picture is worth a thousand words” and in the case of Ryan Smyth he’s hoping that those words would be “goal.” You can’t always take a picture for what it’s worth because it’s capturing one quick moment in time and not the full sequence of events, but I’m going to just say that I wish Getty Images photographer Phillip MacCallum would’ve had a video camera instead of a regular one so we could see how this played out. According to Rich Hammond of L.A. Kings Insider, the NHL would’ve liked that too.

Mike Murphy, the NHL’s senior vice president of hockey operations, told Jim Fox that video-replays officials had “no view available that would allow them to change the call on the ice,” which is why the no-goal, called on the ice with three seconds left, held up.

That’s unfortunate that with all the cameras available in the arena with two different media crews working the game that there wasn’t a shot from the ice level to give the proper perspective. As for Smyth, his thoughts on things had a hearty dose of veteran savvy.

“Well, when I tipped it I brought my stick back down, so I think it was pretty close. I thought it was a good goal. … It would have been great. Three seconds left. It would have been a nice turning point, for sure.”

It certainly would have. Instead, the Kings will have to bounce back in Montreal on Wednesday and hope that they get a little bit better luck.

 

Stars end Capitals’ winning streak, pass Blackhawks for West lead

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For two periods, the Dallas Stars seemed to say, “Are you sure the Washington Capitals are the best team in the NHL?”

They chased Braden Holtby and built a 4-0 lead through those first 40 minutes, and that was enough … but barely. The Stars beat the Capitals 4-3 on Saturday, which accomplished the following:

  • Dallas ended Washington’s winning streak at five games. The Stars have now won three straight.
  • This win slides the Stars ahead of the Chicago Blackhawks for first place in the highly competitive Central Division. While both teams sit at 77 standings points, Dallas holds three games in hand.
  • By passing Chicago, the Stars now lead the Western Conference as a whole.

Impressive stuff. Some might even call it a statement game, although others may hold that nail-biting ending against them (possibly arguing that the Stars’ flaws may come back to haunt them in the playoffs).

Dallas’ biggest concern likely has little to do with doubters. Instead, they must monitor the statuses of forwards Tyler Seguin and Cody Eakin.

Long story short, the Stars are red-hot, yet bigger challenges likely lie ahead.

Blackhawks fall to Ducks in OT, lose Hossa to injury

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The Chicago Blackhawks are on edge on Saturday, and it’s not because of what’s currently a close game against the Anaheim Ducks.

(Not that they’re indifferent toward a match against their opponents from last year’s conference final match, mind you.)

Instead, the Blackhawks are quite concerned about the health of Marian Hossa, who needed help off of the ice following an awkward, scary-looking crash into the boards. (Hampus Lindholm delivered the hip check that sent Hossa sprawling, in case you’re wondering.)

You can see that moment in the video above, while My Regular Face’s GIF also captures that troubling moment:

It’s too early to tell if Hossa will bounce back or miss some time from this. Stay tuned for potential updates.

Update: Joel Quenneville seems optimistic about Hossa, broadly speaking:

Ryan Getzlaf scored the overtime game-winner as the Ducks won 3-2 (OT).

Understatement: Saturday was a rough night for Panthers

Nashville Predators center Colin Wilson (33) checks Florida Panthers center Jonathan Huberdeau (11) during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Sunrise, Fla. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)
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If it weren’t for Mike Yeo and the Minnesota Wild, you could argue that the Florida Panthers suffered from the worst night so far.

You can see that Saturday was unpleasant merely from looking at the scoreboard: the Nashville Predators pummeled the Panthers by an unkind score of 5-0.

The pain goes beyond that … literally so.

For one thing, Quinton Howden suffered an upper-body injury and did not return. That’s no good, but if you want to feel sick to your stomach, footage of Brandon Pirri‘s likely lower-body injury (ankle maybe?) may do the trick.

(Seriously, you may be happier if you don’t look.)

The Panthers didn’t make an announcement about Pirri one way or another, so we’ll see if he somehow avoided anything significant.

Either way, it was a night this team would like to forget.

Fractured jaw from fight sidelines Chris Stewart for 4-8 weeks

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It’s unlikely that Chris Stewart will generate another 30-goal season in the NHL, but he still might be missed by the Anaheim Ducks.

The team announced that the ornery forward is expected to miss four-to-eight weeks with a fractured jaw. If that’s the recovery window, Stewart may go into the playoffs a little rusty (if he can get in any regular season games at all).

The Ducks didn’t elaborate, but the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline believes that the injury happened during a fight with Dalton Prout of the Columbus Blue Jackets. You can see that brawl in the video above.

One bright side for Anaheim: if they believe that they need to replace what Stewart brings to the table (rugged play with a dash of offense), then at least this injury happened before the the Feb. 29 trade deadline.