Hey, Mike Leggo — ya blew it.
The NHL referee was at the center of a puzzling scenario Tuesday night in Montreal where the Canadiens hosted the Tampa Bay Lightning. Late in the second period, Leggo became the center of attention for all the wrong reasons.
It all started when Radko Gudas blasted a shot from the point. The puck seemed to beat Montreal goalie Carey Price and then ricochet out of the net. With Leggo standing right there next to the cage watching the play, he immediately waved it off. OK, so apparently the puck hit the crossbar or something.
At the next stoppage of play, the play was reviewed. It was at that point that Leggo announced that while the puck went in, there would be no goal because there was incidental goaltender interference. The thing about that, though, is that there wasn’t really goaltender interference. According to Leggo, Tyler Johnson interfered with Price, which is why the goal was ultimately waved off after it was reviewed after being waved off the second time.
Make sense? Probably not.
The NHL has made it practice to issue explanation statements regarding video reviews, and they said this about the controversial non-goal:
“The referee informed the Situation Room that he observed incidental contact in the crease by Lightning forward Tyler Johnson on goaltender Carey Price, if in fact the puck crossed the goal line. Video review confirmed that the puck crossed the goal line. According to Rule 78.5 ‘Apparent goals shall be disallowed by the Referee when an attacking player has interfered with a goalkeeper in his goal crease.’ This is not a reviewable play therefore the referee’s decision on the ice stands, no goal Tampa Bay.”
The controversial call didn’t end up costing the Lightning, though. They would eventually overcome a tremendous performance by Price to win the game in a shootout. Still, Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper must be wondering what he can do to change his luck, with this call coming just a day after Steven Stamkos broke his tibia in a game against the Bruins.
See the bizarre sequence from Tuesday’s game in the video below.