By no means was Dustin Byfuglien's(notes) third-period goal the catalyst for the Chicago Blackhawks' Game 3 victory at the Vancouver Canucks. Not when the Blackhawks offered a total team effort, pouncing on the lead in the first period and never relinquishing it in a 5-2 victory. Not when Daniel and Henrik Sedin(notes) were both held scoreless in a home game for just the third time in 2010. Not when it was Roberto Luongo(notes) Giveaway Night.
What this Byfuglien tally was: Another controversial goal ruling from the NHL that would have sparked a wave of outrage in a tighter game:
Video review was used at 13:58 of the 3rd period to determine that puck went off Vancouver Canucks defenseman Alex Edler's skate and into the net. Good goal.
That's where the War Room's responsibility ends because goalie interference is a non-reviewable infraction. If you believe the call was wrong, it's not on the goal judges -- it's on the officiating crew.
Coming up, some reaction to the play from Vancouver and from Hockey Night In Canada -- guess which side Milbury takes? -- but first, we put it to you:
1. Pass or Fail: Dustin Byfuglien's third-period goal rightfully counted.
2. Based on what we've seen this postseason, should goalie interference become a reviewable infraction?
The rules for contact with the goalie in his crease are as spelled out as any in the NHL rulebook, so it's just a matter of enforcement. If the referee is judging Byfuglien on this play, it's interference.
But Byfuglien didn't initiate contact.
Bieksa, continuing his marvelous postseason, had already rammed Kane into Luongo before Byfuglien made contact. Is that enough to give the officials an "out" on this play or does Byfuglien's effort to "push" Luongo into the net a split second later negate that?
From Jason Botchford of The Province, some reaction from the Canucks.
This is the same postseason where Mike Knuble(notes) was called for a critical goalie interference in Washington when his skate blade brushed up against Jaroslav Halak(notes). The standard has evidently changed.
Byfuglien got the fifth goal as he pushed hard into the crease. Luongo went into the net and the puck never got by him. "I can't make the decision for the ref," Luongo said. "That's something that's out of our control. Obviously, it's disappointing. The only way we can answer is by doing the same thing on their side."
And as the angst fades over another perceived injustice to the Canucks, Luongo's advice resonates. The Canucks should watch the game tape, locate their stones and terrorize the Chicago net with the consistent bludgeoning the Blackhawks gave Luongo.