Matt Cooke and controversy often go together — but not in the context of scoring a goal.
On Thursday, they did.
Cooke, playing in his first regular-season game with the Wild, deflected a Kyle Brodziak shot past Jonathan Quick for the opening tally against the Kings — only Cooke appeared to direct it with his skate.
Here’s the video:
The NHL’s situation room ruled it a good goal, and later followed with this explanation:
At 1:04 of the first period in the Kings/Wild game, video review confirmed the referee’s call on the ice that Kyle Brodziak’s shot deflected off Matt Cooke’s skate and into the net in a legal fashion.
The determining factor was that the speed of the puck propelled it into the net and that Cooke’s skate only redirected it.
According to Rule 49.2 “A puck that deflects into the net off an attacking player’s skate who does not use a distinct kicking motion is a legitimate goal.”
Good goal Minnesota.
The decision came as a surprise to many, including Fox Sports North analyst and ex-NHLer Ben Clymer:
I think the Cooke/Broadziak goal is going to be called back for kicking motion. Still great offensive pressure. @mnwild
— Ben Clymer (@ben_clymer) October 4, 2013