Trailing 3-0 midway through the second period of Tuesday night’s game, the Washington Capitals thought they’d finally broken through on San Jose’s Martin Jones.

Referees Peel and Luxmore discuss the play with linesmen McElman and Mach

Referees Peel and Luxmore discuss the play with linesmen McElman and Mach

The puck went in, the red light went on, referee Tim Peel pointed to the net… and Sharks coach Peter DeBoer called timeout to issue a Coach’s Challenge.   

DeBoer’s challenge was centered around whether Caps forward Jay Beagle, who provided a screen for Orlov’s point shot, had interfered with Sharks goaltender Martin Jones.  

Referee Tim Peel headed to the penalty box to review the replays. He was later joined by fellow referee TJ Luxmore to assess the action. 

During a Coach’s Challenge, the call remains in the hands of the on-ice officials. While the NHL’s Situation Room provides guidance, they’re not the ones making the call. 

“After video review, it has been determined that the Washington player came through [and] made contact with the goalie,” Peel announced. “He was unable to properly do his job. No goal.”

 

 

“Wow. I don’t buy it. I do not buy that call one bit.” said Caps broadcaster Craig Laughlin. “I don’t think he made contact with the goalie. He came through and screened him which to me is not goaltender interference and it should be deemed a goal.”

The NHL rulebook spells out the details of the Coach’s Challenge in Rule 78.7: 

The standard for overturning the call in the event of a “GOAL” call on the ice is that the Referee, after reviewing any and all available replays and consulting with the Toronto Video Room, determines that the goal should have been disallowed due to “Interference on the Goalkeeper,” as described in Rules 69.1, 69.3 and 69.4.

The relevant part of Rule 69.1, which covers Goaltender Interference, is below:

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; or (2) an attacking player initiates intentional or deliberate contact with a goalkeeper, inside or outside of his goal crease.

For purposes of this rule, “contact,” whether incidental or otherwise, shall mean any contact that is made between or among a goalkeeper and attacking player(s), whether by means of a stick or any part of the body. The overriding rationale of this rule is that a goalkeeper should have the ability to move freely within his goal crease without being hindered by the actions of an attacking player. If an attacking player enters the goal crease and, by his actions, impairs the goalkeeper’s ability to defend his goal, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.

Based on the outcome, Peel and Luxmore saw enough contact in that replay to overturn the original goal call. 

Watching the goal back, Beagle clearly skates through the top of the crease. He appears to make contact – however minor – with the goaltender’s glove. During the live action, Peel was stationed on the opposite side of of the ice, with Jones blocking the referee’s view of the action in front of the net.  Luxmore was properly positioned outside the zone.

It’s a great case for Coach’s Challenge — the referee was able to see a different angle of the same play in order to make the correct call.   Did he?

 

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