The NHL is owning up to a controversial penalty call that caused the Vegas Golden Knights to get eliminated from the playoff series.
VGK franchise owner Bill Foley revealed that the NHL officially apologized for a referee’s penalty call during game 7, according to Las Vegas Review Journal.
“It was a bad call, it was a mistake, we recognize the mistake and we acknowledge it,” said a senior NHL executive to Foley.
The penalty call came halfway through the 3rd period when Golden Knights players Cody Eakin and Paul Stasny cross-checked San Jose player Joe Pavelski.
Causing Pavelski to hit his head on the ice and receive a cut from his helmet face cage.
The refree on the ice ejected Cody Eakin and gave Vegas a 5-minute major penalty. Causing them to be short one player for an entire five minutes.
Making the Golden Knights to lose their 3-0 score lead and pushed them into overtime, where they lost 5-4. Thus, eliminating them from the playoffs.
???? Pacioretty: It's a very frustrating feeling but we have to remember it for next year. pic.twitter.com/02lzVBjvyJ— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) April 24, 2019
Hockey critics felt that the 5-minute major penalty call was too harsh. The referee’s on ice didn’t get a clear look at the Eakin-Pavelski cross check, so they made a call without getting a full look at the act.
“They called a result and they did not call the act. They’re to call the act not the result,” said Foley.
The NHL ended up punishing two of the three refs that officiated the VGK vs San Jose game.
Dan O’Halloran and Eric Furlatt, who officiated that game, are not officiating in the second round of the playoffs, according to Scouting The Refs.com.
Even though losing a 3-1 series lead against San Jose the Vegas Golden Knights are optimistic for the next season.
Haula: I wish I could have played and helped my team out. Now it’s just about getting ready for next year. pic.twitter.com/xJ6eoDh1uB— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) April 25, 2019
Eakin: Everyone saw the play and knows what happened. We can’t think about it anymore really.— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) April 25, 2019
Stone: I'm really excited with where this group can go. There's still room to grow which is positive.— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) April 25, 2019
We already have a good team, we just want to make it a great team.
A 3rd alternate jersey for the Vegas Golden Knights is expected to be revealed for the 2020-2021 season as well, according to the team’s official Twitter.
Things will be looking bright for the team’s future.
Written by Ronnie Gonzalez.