An overeager official nearly hurt both the Florida Panthers and the New York Rangers on Monday night.
Late in the second period of New York’s eventual 4-2 win at Madison Square Garden, referee T.J. Luxmore found himself positioned directly in the middle of the crease as a slew of Panthers players unsuccessfully tried to push the puck past Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.
The puck never actually touched Luxmore, but his netfront presence drastically cut down on the amount of open net Florida’s Jussi Jokinen had to shoot at.
Luxmore jumped to avoid Jokinen’s shot, and that’s when the situation got dicey for Lundqvist. The goalie, who’d lost his stick in the fracas, reached out with his blocker hand toward the puck, putting it directly beneath Luxmore’s skates.
Thankfully, Luxmore made only the slightest contact with Lundqvist, and everyone skated away unharmed.
Lundqvist finished with 25 saves for the Rangers, who will host the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night.
Thumbnail photo via Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports Images