Chris Johnston of Sportsnet reports that the NHL took a look at the 93 playoff games played in 2014, and after reviewing decided that a couple of goals should have not been allowed to stand.
If you’ve already forgotten the Stanley Cup Final, maybe you’ve forced it out of your head because you don’t want to suffer, you probably don’t remember the situation. Game two of the Final, the New York Rangers are leading the Los Angeles Kings 4-2 with 18 minutes left in the period and Dwight King scores this goal on Henrik Lundqvist that was at the time questionable but should have been overturned. Here’s the clip. You can clearly see defenseman Ryan Mcdonagh is trying to cover his man and King (who is in the crease) falls on top of Lundqvist which prevents him from making the save.
Look, I’m not saying that if this goal was overturned the Rangers would have gone on to win the game. The Kings in the playoffs were a very high scoring team, and with Marian Gaborik playing the way he was you had to at least assume the comeback was a possibility. However, this goal set the wheels in motion for the momentum change that the Kings took full advantage of, which led to the Gaborik tying goal, which led to the game-winner in overtime. If the Rangers win this game, the series is tied at one, they lose game three, win game four, and game five suddenly has a different meaning.
If Gary Bettman really wants the National Hockey League to be a league that stands apart from all the others then simple mistakes like this CANNOT happen, especially in the Final rounds of the playoffs. To come out five months after the fact and say “um, so yea, we messed up” is inexcusable and unacceptable and although it’s too late to do anything about it now, it’s just frustrating to know that the series could have ended so much differently, or at the very least gone on a little bit longer.