Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Kerrzy's Notebook: Upon Further Review...

The Philadelphia Flyers beat the Penguins 7-4 in Pittsburgh last Thursday for their first win over the Pens in four games this season, but it wasn't without a dash of controversy.

In the second period of the game, with the score 5-3 for Philly, Simon Gagne appeared to score a shorthanded goal on Penguins goalie Brent Johnson. Upon further review though, it was decided that there was no conclusive evidence that the puck crossed the line and so the goal was waved off.

Here's where things get interesting - in an effort to (presumably) save a bit of cash, Comcast SportsNet decided to just use the FSN Pittsburgh feed of the game. When it came time to review the play, it turns out the war room in Toronto wasn't provided with ALL of the possible replays, including the one angle that shows a clear goal...which FSN Pittsburgh showed once the goal was officially disallowed.


I saw this story on Monday on one of my favourite hockey blogs (Puck Daddy), but figured I had sort of missed the boat in terms of writing on it...there was a bit of an update on Tuesday though:

FSN Pittsburgh, in a move that makes you wonder just how much of an oversight this might have been, has handed out an indefinite suspension to longtime hockey producer Lowell MacDonald Jr. (son of former Penguins forward Lowell MacDonald).

Here's what the company had to say:

"There is nothing more important than the integrity of the game. During last Thursday's game against the Philadelphia Flyers, a definitive replay of a Flyers goal was not aired prior to the conclusion of the official review and, as a result, a Flyers goal was not awarded. Fortunately, this did not change the outcome of the game. Nonetheless, FSN Pittsburgh's failure to provide video to the league officials in a timely fashion was wholly unacceptable. FSN Pittsburgh has addressed this matter and has taken steps to ensure that such a failure does not occur again."

Maybe it's just me, and maybe it's just because I'm still thinking about the can of worms that the whole Alex Burrows/Stephane Auger situation opened up this week...but the next time you see a goal waved off because of "inconclusive evidence," won't this make you wonder if the war room actually has all of the angles?

What would have happened if the game was tied when Gagne's goal was disallowed and the decision cost Philly the game? Should opposing teams start bringing their own cameras to Mellon Arena?

It's turning out to be a tumultuous start to the New Year for the NHL (and hockey in general if you count the whole KHL thing)...what's next?

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