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How did Colorado Avalanche’s first goal count vs. Wild in Game 7?

Greg Wyshynski
Puck Daddy

The Colorado Avalanche took a 1-0 lead in Game 7 against the Minnesota Wild on rather controversial goal – one that featured an Avs player appearing to make contact with the Wild’s goalie and the referee initially waving off the goal.

Here’s the Nick Holden goal:

As the video shows, Jamie McGinn appears to interfere with Darcy Kuemper while lunging for a puck off a Matt Duchene shot. Kuemper couldn’t make the save on Holden’s shot; question is, did McGinn contribute to his inability to make the stop?

OK, that was the question everyone watching the play was asking, especially when referee Wes McCauley waved off the goal initially.

But according to the NHL, it wasn’t a factor on the place. Here’s the League’s official explanation on the goal:

At 2:52 of the first period in the Minnesota Wild/Colorado Avalanche game, Colorado's Nick Holden shot the puck into the Minnesota net in a legal fashion. The in-zone referee initially waved his arms after the puck crossed the goal line as a reaction to a potential infraction for high-sticking the puck. The on-ice officials then huddled regarding the play to discuss if it was a good hockey goal and agreed the goal would stand. Good goal Colorado.

So interference wasn’t the consideration for the referee, but rather a high stick. But even if McGinn was tripped up into Kuemper, the NHL rules state that if “an attacking player makes incidental contact with the goalkeeper at the same time a goal is scored” while the goalie is in the crease, the goal is disallowed.

But that’s not where the focus was on this play.

 

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