goal review controversies

Controversy swirls as Hurricanes force Game 7 vs. Capitals

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After Game 5, people wondered what Dougie Hamilton was thinking. Game 6 involved a similar question, but this time the hockey world questioned what the officials were thinking.

The Carolina Hurricanes did a tremendous job battling back from 1-0 and 2-1 deficits in Game 6, ultimately winning 5-2. But, no doubt about it, a disallowed 3-3 goal for the Washington Capitals will hover over this game.

Moments after a 3-3 tie instead moved back to a 3-2 lead for the Hurricanes, Justin Williams put the contest out of reach with a 4-2 goal, then Dougie Hamilton got the next laugh with an empty-netter. The two teams will meet in a Game 7 to decide which team will move on to face the New York Islanders.

Judge that call for yourself, even if it ultimately didn’t stand:

One interesting element is the league’s explanation for the non-goal. Many wondered if this was an “intent to blow” the whistle situation where an official lost sight of the puck, yet the NHL’s Situation Room explained that it was determined that Alex Ovechkin interfered with Petr Mrazek‘s attempt to make a stop.

Ovechkin went from mocking Hamilton with a “chicken” gesture to being tossed from Game 6 after losing his cool (and giving it to the officials) late in the contest.

However you feel about the debated would-be 3-3 goal, it’s possible that the Hurricanes might have forced a Game 7, anyway. Overall, it was an exciting, well-played Game 6, with the teams following scripts we expected going into Round 1. Carolina generally dominated “quantity” in scoring chances and shot attempts, yet the Capitals sometimes had the edge from a “quality” standpoint.

Carolina kept fighting back in Game 6, as the Hurricanes have during this series, and Jordan Staal‘s eventual game-winner captured that scrappy spirit.

While this series has been a mix of nail-biters and blowouts, it just feels right that this one’s going to Game 7, even if the Capitals probably aren’t happy with how it got there.

Hurricanes – Capitals Game 7 takes place at Capital One Arena on Wednesday. (Stream here)

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

Video: You make the call – Alex Tanguay’s controversial shootout-winning goal

If nothing else, the shootout is good for providing conversation fodder and tonight’s shootout in Vancouver will certainly bring the discussion out in spades.

Calgary’s Alex Tanguay appeared to be denied on his bid to win the game in the shootout as he put his shot right into the pads of Roberto Luongo. The problem here being that Luongo in his efforts to stop the puck slid across the goal line. The official ruled it no-goal on the ice, but the call went to replay.

On the video, there was no way to see the puck underneath the pads nor where it was truly located and it was assumed that the puck had crossed the line while it was caught up in Luongo’s pads. The call was changed to a goal and the Flames won the game 4-3.

While the call was correct and logical, it’s stunning to see logic factor into a replay decision. The infuriating thing with NHL replay is that you never really know what you’re going to get which puts it in stark contrast with replay in the NFL where you pretty much know which way the call is going to go no matter what once a play is reviewed.

What do you think though? Should they have counted this as a goal? Have a look at the replay and see for yourself.

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Ondrej Pavelec, Viktor Stalberg factor into Wednesday’s near-goals

Wednesday night featured at least two non-goals worthy of your attention, even if the two tallies elicit different emotions.

The first near-score featured what looked like a score by Florida Panthers defenseman Bryan McCabe on Atlanta Thrashers goalie Ondrej Pavelec that never ended up receiving a goal review. It’s the kind of situation that some call a miscue while others many don the tinfoil hats and conjure conspiracy theories.

The second almost-goal is more of the unfortunate sort, but in a dumb, bad luck kind of way. Chicago Blackhawks forward Viktor Stalberg earned a penalty shot after being taken down by Dallas Stars defenseman Nicklas Grossman. He made a move that beat Kari Lehtonen and came about as close to scoring a goal as you can get, as the puck hit the crossbar and both posts but never entered the net.

Before we take a look at the Pavelec video, here are some thoughts on the non-reviewed goal from George Richards of On Frozen Pond.

The Panthers coach sure wasn’t thrilled when the night was concluded, either, as Bryan McCabe’s apparent goal was never looked at and Atlanta left BankAtlantic Center with a 3-2 win.

Most close calls in net are reviewed via satellite at Hockey Central in Toronto. McCabe’s shot lodged inside the cage beyond the line before Ondrej Pavelec pulled it free. Were reviewers in Toronto distracted by the Canada-Russia game taking place at the world juniors?

“It looks like a goal to me and I’m baffled why the referees can make certain to make sure everyone goes to the box but why no one took a second look at it,” DeBoer said. “They look at everything else. I got no explanation why. They said if it was close, Toronto would have buzzed them. They never got that.”

Should the goal have been reviewed by the Toronto war room? You be the judge by viewing video of the situation. (Kukla’s Korner also features an alternate take of the video via a Youtube user here.)

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Certainly seems fishy. Moving on from the Pavelec/McCabe controversy, let’s take a look at Stalberg’s near-goal. The Dallas Stars went on to win the game 4-2, but the fourth goal was an empty-netter. Who knows how different things might have been if Stalberg received a bit more puck luck?

Then again, judging from the Steve Stamkos slip, maybe it was just a bad night for people earning penalty shots.

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