It's official: The Calder Cup Final has more controversial drama than the Stanley Cup Final in 2012.
On Thursday night, the Norfolk Admirals defeated the Toronto Marlies in Game 3 with a fluke overtime goal (watch it here): Defenseman Mike Kostka dumped the puck into the Marlies zone off the glass, it hit a stanchion and then slid into the Toronto net while goalie Ben Scrivens was behind the net waiting to play the puck.
The Admirals won, 1-0, and took a 3-0 series lead.
However … the play appeared to occur on a delayed offside, leading to a debate about whether it should have counted. From Mirtle at the Globe & Mail:
Marlies coach Dallas Eakins said he had never seen a play like it and assumed in his postgame press conference that the right call had been made.
"I saw it and it's a real interesting one for the referees," Eakins said. "The puck comes out, the puck's rimmed in, there's a guy that's offside by about eight to 10 feet, the puck hits the stanchion, but now he is onside and it goes in your net. It's a fairly grey area. Once again, something that I've never seen. I'm sure the referees have never seen anything like that either."
Perhaps that's why they blew the call, according to the AHL.
Here's the play in question:
Here's the statement from AHL President David Andrews (who, by the way, will join us on Marek Vs. Wyshynski Friday afternoon):
"We have spoken with Toronto Marlies management and confirmed that a rules interpretation error by the on-ice officials occurred on the Norfolk Admirals' overtime goal during Game 3 of the Calder Cup Finals.
"On the play, a dump-in from center ice by a Norfolk player caromed off a stanchion and into the Toronto net. The correct application of AHL Rule 83.4 would have negated the Norfolk goal due to a delayed offside call."
Awesome. So what, do they just replay the overtime or something before Game 4?
"As AHL By-Laws do not allow for any change to the final result of a game based on an incorrect rule interpretation, the result of the game stands."