What a wild game.
The second period was pretty much a snoozer after Bridgeport had taken the early two-goal edge, but the third period amped up the drama in a big way. First was the Thomas Di Pauli “no goal,” which at first glance I thought was clean. Contact or no contact, the ruling from the referee was Colin Smith was in the crease and thus, Chris Gibson was unable to make a play on the puck (goaltender interference).
Donatelli was clearly upset on the bench, and this was his explanation after:
“I think they should review it. If it’s a goal, review the goal. Don’t review the call. Review the goal. … We can review those things. I think we can; I don’t know the rules, but I think you can review all goals. Rather than make a call and not know, let’s go to the video.”
So, to me, it sounded that since the goaltender interference was a judgement call by the official and not a clear-cut scenario (e.g. the puck crossing the red line or not), the crew was unable to review it or did not want to. I don’t know the specific rule, but if I find it I’ll share it with you and try to shed some light on the situation.
But then the real fun started soon after.
Props to the Penguins in that they kept working that entire period after the call. Zach Aston-Reese’s goal (and hasn’t he come up with some big ones lately) to cut the deficit to one was huge in that there wasn’t a need to cheat a little or be more daring with the puck late in the game. Stick to the plan and capitalize on a gift 6-on-4 chance, and that’s just what they did.
Teddy Blueger’s goal in overtime was a nifty backhand after he pushed off a little bit to get around Josh Ho-Sang. This was what Donatelli had to say about Blueger’s heroics in OT:
It all starts with his defense; we end up getting the puck when he goes down and steals it. He’s really good 3-on-3, just because he’s so smart, his hockey IQ, and he can score in those situations.
It was his third OT goal this season, which leads the AHL.
Also a great game for Anthony Peters; he could have folded after those first couple goals but didn’t and made some big saves through the rest of the first period. A well-deserved third win in a row.
And you can’t help but smile for Sebastien Caron getting to suit up with the team one more time. I’ll have some video from his postgame comments on the Facebook page if you’d like to take a listen.
Here’s hoping for a more standard game on Friday.