The Boston Bruins were running pretty hot about a third period goal that was disallowed for goalie interference, but ultimately didn’t hurt them in a 2-1 OT win over the Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center.
It appeared that Charlie Coyle scored on a loose puck where he spun and snapped one in late in the third period, and that would have been the go-ahead goal in what was a game deadlocked at one goal apiece. Instead, the referees ruled goalie interference on the ice as a couple of bodies were flying around Marc-Andre Fleury just before Coyle’s shot found the back of the net.
Charlie Coyle’s go ahead goal called goaltender interference. Bruins challenge. Still ruled no goal. I have no idea anymore pic.twitter.com/xFSyau0mUv
— Spoked Z (@SpokedZ) March 16, 2022
The Boston Bruins bench challenged the call and subsequent video reviews showed that a diving Riley Stillman bumped into Flower just before the scoring Coyle shot. There was slight contact between Craig Smith and Marc-Andre Fleury as well, but it didn’t appear that impeded the Blackhawks goaltender in any way as the Stillman bump did.
On the contrary, it looked like Smith did everything he could to avoid a goalie interference call that might have killed the play.
Nevertheless, it’s always an uphill battle to get a call overturned when it was initially ruled “no goal” on the ice to start with. The NHL Situation Room upheld the “no goal” call after a brief review and the Boston Bruins were saddled with a two-minute delay of game penalty for their troubles.
Per the NHL release: Video review confirmed the actions of Boston’s Craig Smith impaired goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury’s ability to play his position prior to Charlie Coyle’s goal. The decision was made in accordance with Rule 69.1, which states in part, “Goals should be disallowed only if: (1) an attacking player, either by his positioning or by contact, impairs the goalkeeper’s ability to move freely within his crease or defend his goal.”
Boston Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy was fired up about the Coyle goal being taken off the board after it was all over, even when the Bruins ultimately found a way to win in overtime with Matt Grzelcyk’s game-winner off a slick Taylor Hall feed.
“We were finally able to get one in overtime to win 3-1,” said Cassidy postgame, dripping with sarcasm. “I didn’t like the call at all. I’ve watched it 10 times and I still don’t see where there is any interference. I see their guy going into their goalie. I think [Craig Smith] might have touched his blocker, and that’s a ‘might.’ It was before the shot and it didn’t affect his ability to play the position in my opinion.
“I thought it was a good goal all day long. Typically I wouldn’t challenge it with five minutes to go, but I just thought it was so obvious that it was a goal that they mistook Smith for [Stillman], who slid into him. Their own player and we didn’t affect his path to the goalie where he turned, pivoted and lost his footing. I just thought it was one they would [overturn]. The National Hockey League is always looking for more offense and I certainly thought it was a good goal. I’ll make a phone call at some to find out exactly what they saw. But at the end of the day, it didn’t hurt us.”
What did everybody else think about a clear instance where everybody (fans, media, players and coaches alike) felt like they saw one thing, and the NHL Situation Room saw something else at a crucial point in a game.