The Danny Briere phantom offside might be the most memorable missed offside of the playoffs so far, but Washington Capitals coach Dale Hunter will tell you that a pretty big one slipped by in Game 3 of his team’s series against the Boston Bruins. Stephen Whyno provides the story as well as a video example for your perusal:
Here’s video of the goal that eventually resulted:
Hunter must not be happy with the hand the Capitals are being dealt as Nicklas Backstrom has been suspended and this missed call happened. Here’s what he said about it.
“[Officials] do miss stuff,” Hunter said. “The other night, the winning goal was offside … Definitely offside. It was a bad call.”
Oh, and here’s a devious little nugget: Whyno points out that the same linesmen who called the game with the missed Briere offside was on hand for that one. Yikes.
With all that in mind, do you agree with Hunter? If so, is it time to get some tinfoil caps with red No. 8’s on them?
Stanley Cup Final referees: McCauley, O’Halloran, O’Rourke, Sutherland
PITTSBURGH — When Pete DeBoer was hired to coach the San Jose Sharks, he wasn’t totally cognizant of how much heartbreak the fan base had experienced throughout the years.
Now he knows.
“First year in the community, I didn’t realize kind of the baggage that was carried around,” DeBoer said this morning ahead of Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. “Twenty-five-year season-ticket holders coming up to you with tears in their eyes and crying.”
The Sharks, of course, have never been this far in the playoffs. Prior to this year, they’d made it three times to the Western Conference Final, losing each time.
More painful were the first-round exits. Like in 2009 when they won the Presidents’ Trophy and got knocked out by the Ducks, and two years ago when they led the Kings 3-0 before dropping four straight.
It was only after the Sharks beat the Blues that DeBoer fully realized the “gravity of what they’ve been through” as fans in San Jose, and “how important this is to them.”
Not that he’s satisfied with getting this far.
“The business at hand now is to get off on the right foot, plant the right seeds for this series, impose our game,” he said. “Every series is the same — it’s whatever team can impose their game on the other team the quickest and for the longest. That’s our goal here tonight.”
The San Jose Sharks are unlikely to make any lineup changes for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final in Pittsburgh — at Monday’s optional morning skate, Nieto stayed out late with the extras while the guy he’d (presumably) replace in the lineup, Dainius Zubrus, told NHL.com he was in.
Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer wouldn’t reveal any lineup decisions during his morning media availability, instead talking up both Nieto (for his speed) and Zubrus (for his “heavy” game), adding he liked the versatility the two give the club on a night-by-night basis.
Nieto suffered an upper-body injury in Game 6 of the Nashville series, and missed all of the Western Conference Final.
Prior to getting hurt, he had three points in 11 games — this after a regular season in which he scored eight goals and 17 points in 67 games.