There were more goals disallowed via Coach’s Challenge than ones that actually counted after the first period of Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final between the Florida Panthers and Carolina Hurricanes.

The Canes opened the scoring just 1:43 into the game.  Less than a minute later, Florida appeared to score the equalizer. Carolina head coach Rod Brind’Amour challenged that the play was offside.

Linesmen Matt MacPherson and David Brisebois donned the headsets to discuss the play with the NHL’s Situation Room.  After a brief review, the goal was overturned.




It’s clear Bennett entered the zone ahead of the puck.  In some cases, that’s legal. From Rule 83.1:

A player controlling the puck who shall cross the line ahead of the puck shall not be considered “off-side,” provided he had possession and control of the puck prior to his skates crossing the leading edge of the blue line.

Florida’s Sam Bennett tipped the puck with his stick, but did not control the puck as he entered the attacking zone.


The next goal in the game also resulted in a Coach’s Challenge. 

Late in the first period, the Hurricanes cleared the puck up ice. Panthers defenseman Radko Gudas, pursued by Paul Stastny, backhanded the puck out of the zone.  Carolina’s Mackenzie MacEachern gloved the puck down and passed it to defenseman Jack Drury, who hammered it past goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky to give the Canes a 2-0 lead.

Florida head coach Paul Maurice, discussing the play with his staff, challenged for offside.


Once again, the linesmen discussed the play with the Situation Room.  After video review, it was determined that the puck left the zone – completely crossing the blue line – before MacEachern batted it back in.  That put Stastny offside and negated the goal. 
Linesman David Brisebois hopped on the bench to avoid the play and was positioned in the neutral zone; MacEachern’s body likely blocked his view of the puck on the play.
Teams were very successful in offside challenges during the regular season, with league average of 88% success rate. Both of tonight’s teams were perfect in the regular season, with the Canes going 7-for-7 and Florida 2-for-2.