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First this is hockey. Calls are made in a split second at real time speed. The penalty on Richards was a clean hit, but the referee was behind Richards, which when seen from that angle, did look like a trip or knee. So that is not what caused the Flyers to lose Game 1. This is no different than the ref losing site of the puck during a goal mouth scramble.

The Canadians 2nd goal however, was replayed and shown frame by frame on Hi-Def TV in Toronto. I cannot understand how the player hit the puck, then the crossbar on the way down and yet the puck was below the crossbar. I would have accepted if they had no good look at it, that the play stood as called on the ice. But the league said it was a good goal. Cmon fellas. The purpose of replay is the get the call correct and in my humble opinion, they blew this one.

So that said, it is time to regroup now for the Flyers. They played a good game especially for the 3rd playoff game in 4 nights, with 2 into overtime. I am unsure why the Pens and Rangers (the Knicks were eliminated from the playoffs in December I think) didn't play last night instead. Neither of the Pens or Rangers have basketball playoffs to contend with at their arena. Seems odd. I am sure that TSN wanted the Habs for their beloved Hockey Night in Canada broadcast, but the Rangers and Pittsburgh would have been a nice draw too.

So now the Flyers know that they are on an even field with this team. Now just settle down and execute. Take today and relax, do some film work and get ready to gain the split in game 2. That is the goal, do not dwell on game 1. Rest up boys, this will be a long series.
Filed Under:   Playoffs   Canadians   Flyers  
April 25, 2008 10:27 AM ET | Delete
The Pens and Rangers play tonight because the NHL is obsessed with putting Sidney Crosby on television on Sundays.
April 25, 2008 10:39 AM ET | Delete
Classic response. But one additional note, the Canadian Television is just as obsessed with having a Canadian team on Hockey Night in Canada. Not sure why, every NHL team is made up of mostly Canadians. Seems silly!
April 25, 2008 10:42 AM ET | Delete
Good point about HNIC. The NHL offices are in NY though, and they also want to see the NY market share go up with a Sunday afternoon tilt.
April 25, 2008 10:43 AM ET | Delete
This is why you have two refs in this game, TO NOT MISS A CALL. They should be allowed to overrule a call when it is incorrect as was the case with Richards and face off at center.But hey why would the NHL do anything that makes sense? As for their 2nd goal, that is exactly why I was so annoyed, HI-Def or not (and I don't have Hi-Def) you can clearly see his stick after the puck was in on the cross bar. It stands to reason that when he hit it it was OVER the cross bar.
April 25, 2008 11:22 AM ET | Delete
Nice post, but if only to give another perspective. The Richards penalty was a penalty. When you look at the reply of the hit don't look at his shoulder but look at his knee. Kovalev fell forward and over, not back and away as would've been the case with a clean shoulder check. Physics speaks volumes. When Scott Stevens hit Lindros with that infamous check, Lindros did not fall forward! As for the goal I initially agree that it looks illegal. However after having looked a several replays it "seems" that the puck went off the heel of his stick and it's the tip of his blade that hits the bar, that's more or less 12 inches. I have to believe that's what did it. If it's any consolation think of how the Caps fan felt after the theatrics of the 7th game on Tuesday! One big difference, you still have some hockey to play and you're very far from out of it!!!
April 25, 2008 12:08 PM ET | Delete
Ah, when the shoe is on the other foot. I'll admit I thought it was a hight stick at first. But after all the angles CBC showed, it did seem like he timed it just right and the puck hit the heel of the stick right at the crossbar. Very very close, and I don't think anything was conclusive enough to call it no goal. The Richards penalty was borderline. Yes, he got a little bit of knee and elbow out, but it really wasn't that bad. Still a penalty, but I've seen worse. If I didn't know any better I'd say a lot of Philly fans are "whining" about the officiating, but I like that you've at least given it some thought and not just a knee jerk reaction. This will definitely be a good series.
April 25, 2008 12:18 PM ET | Delete
Penalty or no penalty, goal or no goal, it all comes out in the wash eventually. Plain and simple we didn't do enough to win the game. The luck was even too, remember the two posts by Montreal in the first period? They just made the most of their chances we didn't.
April 25, 2008 12:24 PM ET | Delete
Lou, never let the laws of physics get in the way of a good rationalization. Mass, acceleration and vector of travel all factor in to the direction of the carom when two objects collide. If you actually watch the replay, Kovalev attempts to avoid Richerds, who hits him with his shoulder at a less than head on angle, hence Kovalev's momentum continues to carry him forward albeit not in a straight line. (Angle of incidence is equal to the angle of reflection) The shoulder combined with Kovalev attempting to hop around Richards and avoid the hit is what caused the tumble. The replay also clearly shows Van Massenhoven turning as the play takes place and he officiated the result, not the play.
April 25, 2008 4:20 PM ET | Delete
So Pocono, if I understand your Jargon correctly you're telling me that Richards hit Kovy with his shoulder so hard that Kovalev actually fell head over heels!!!! All I know is that if you're rolling downhill on a bike and I hit you cross-sided with a bat (Not that I would!), the bike will continue rolling but you'll fall back. If we take the same set up but I strike the front wheel of the bike instead, you'll flip over the bike. Look at the hit again and look at their left knees, Kovy goes forward and over not back and down. Sorry it was clearly a knee!!! Van Massenhoven saw the forward and over part, good call!
April 25, 2008 9:31 PM ET | Delete
Lou, to use your example, your premise it correct providing you head on, however if you hit from the side, I would continue moving forward, albeit not in the direction I was traveling. Also, if I attempt to jump off the bike (or past an opposing player) as I get hit, I woud definitely continue to travel forward at a vector to my previous line of travel. Seeing the forward and over part does not make it a good call, it makes it reffing the result.
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