Video: Columbus no-goal controversy exposes NHL review flaws

The Columbus Blue Jackets' loss at the Nashville Predators on Sunday was notable for a few reasons. It was the home debut for Nashville product and fourth generation NHLer Blake Geoffrion(notes). It was the 16th straight trip to Nashville that resulted in a loss for Columbus.

It was also a one-goal game, 3-2, which makes this controversial "no goal" for Derek MacKenzie(notes) at 12:35 of the first period sting even more for Jackets fans:

The video's a tad choppy, but you get the gist of it: MacKenzie puts in the rebound, Colin Wilson(notes) dejectedly fishes it out of the net, and referee Greg Kimmerly signals "no goal" while standing somewhere in Kentucky, having not a clue whether it was a goal or not.

The War Room in Toronto looked at it, and upheld the call. Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch tweeted the following after the nearly nine-minute delay:

Said this before: In NFL, when a play goes to replay, fans/media/players/coaches almost always know w certainty what result will be ...

In NHL, nobody has a clue what the ruling will be. The results are all over the map. And that doesn't paint the NHL in a favorable light ...

Goal by MacKenzie was disallowed, league says, because at no point on replay could the puck be seen as clearly over the line. ...

Well, the NFL oftentimes seems just as inconsistent with its rules. (Five words: "Did the receiver have control?") But Portzline's point is taken: Everything that happened around this play would indicate that it was a goal, but because the replay officials couldn't witness the puck crossing the line, it's "no goal."

Simply put, and this is a broken record, it's a flawed system. The Columbus broadcast crew made a good point: We're depending on camera coverage to determine the validity of goals, and there are giant, thick, opaque white pads obstructing our view on the side of the net. Does that make sense?

They've talked about adding a yellow reference line. They've talked about putting a chip in the puck, but haven't found a way to make it work. As NHL VP Mike Murphy told us last summer: The NHL would love to have more angles, more hi-def coverage of the goal. So why not invest in it around the league to ensure that what our eyes tell us and logic dictates isn't overruled by a blind-spot in television coverage?

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