This has nothing to do with the Backstrom play, but, you know, it’s now A Thing. (GIF by welshhockeyfan)
With the Washington Capitals locked in 1-1 game with the Dallas Stars, Nicklas Backstrom crashed the net. That’s great. Net crashing is cool. But when John Carlson whacked the puck towards the crease, Nicky did something naughty after missing the tip-in: he cross-checked Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen in the face. That’s not allowed. Lehtonen went down hard, throwing his blocker off in the process.
Initially, the refs ruled it a good goal. After conferring, though, Backie’s goal was waved off due to incidental contact, according the NHL.
“[N]o goal, no penalty,” the league said on its website. “This play is the referee’s call on the ice and is not reviewable.”
“I think it should have been a goal based on the replay,” Caps head coach Adam Oates told reporters after the game. “The referees, they’re trying to do the best they can.”
“I didn’t think Backie interfered with him,” he added. “I thought he touched the puck first and then the goalie, and obviously the goalie embellished a little.”
“You gotta be able to survive that stuff,” Oates concluded.
Caps color man Craig Laughlin also wasn’t a fan of the call, harping on it for the next 30 minutes of play. In a game they ultimately lost by one goal, it would’ve been a welcome even strength tally for Washington. Through three games this year, the team has been outscored nine to three at five-on-five. Their magisterial power play (six for 12) is keeping them from stinking it up at the moment. Lucky for the Caps, though, the team has three practices to correct their errors before their next game on Thursday.
So what do you think? Good goal or not?
GIF by Ian Oland