May 5th, 2018 by

Officiating, yet again, rears its ugly head in pivotal moment

Officiating, yet again, rears its ugly head in pivotal moment

“I don’t have anything to say about the officiating,” Charlie McAvoy said moments after the Bruins’ Game 4 overtime loss to the Lightning.

McAvoy easily could have vented about the men in stripes, again, after another frustrating night full of head scratching calls and non-calls. After all, McAvoy was on the receiving end of the most frustrating non-call of the night after Nikita Kucherov held him as the ex-Boston University standout attempted to clear the puck out of the zone.

Instead, McAvoy turned the puck over to J.T. Miller, who set Steven Stamkos up for his patented one-timer to tie things up at 3-3 with 7:04 left in regulation.

“Yeah, you know, we had the lead. It was a very blatant grab on Chukie’s [Charlie McAvoy’s] shoulder,” Brad Marchand said. “Turned into a goal, so you know, the missed calls that are costing goals and games, you know, it’s unfortunate that [the referees] can’t get it right, so you know, hopefully they can fix that.”

Marchand knows about those frustrating and impactful non-calls. He was on the receiving end of that in Game 2 when Anton Stralman slashed him on a breakaway attempt late in the third period with the Lightning leading 3-2 down in Tampa.

As bad as the Game 2 outing was, Game 4 was even worse and not just for the non-call on Kucherov. The calls, themselves, were quite bad on both sides. Noel Acciari going off for hooking earlier in the third period? Check. Tyler Johnson slashing Zdeno Chara for retaliating after a big hit — just seconds after Patrice Bergeron gave the Bruins a 3-2 lead? Yep, Chara sold that. Call it a makeup call.

Well, you’d have to ask the players that. We tell them not to, but we’re human beings. It’s game after game after game. To me, you know, the calls – you look at the [Noel] Acciari penalty, it’s unbelievable that the league gives you directive at the start of the year that if you’re going to go at the stick, you’ve got to go under the stick and not on the hands, over top the hands…he goes under the stick a foot from his hands, and you’ve got a six-foot-five guy that, I think, really sold it, and I think the officials have to be on top of that.”

Even more frustrating? The Bruins had all the momentum on their side after falling behind 2-0 — for the second straight game — in their best performance of the series. But that went for naught after Stamkos’ equalizer and Dan Girardi’s tip-in game-winner at 3:18 of the extra session.

“You lose in overtime, any team will tell you it’s hard. Put ourselves in a hole early; we dug ourselves out of it. Gave up a late goal, we just discussed that,” Cassidy added. “I thought the non-call impacted the play directly, and that’s that. In overtime, they won a puck battle along the wall, made a play.”

The Lightning made that one last play in overtime. Maybe they still bounce back and tie things up if Kucherov is called for holding McAvoy, but that’s hearsay.

The Bruins had their chance to overcome another tough call against them. They didn’t. And now they’ll put their season on the line — most likely without Torey Krug — in Game 5 Sunday afternoon in Tampa.

“Desperate hockey,” Bergeron said about the team’s mentality. “You know, we’ve shown character all year. You know, I’ve spoke[n] about that — about the resilience in this room — so it’s time to show it.”

Share "Officiating, yet again, rears its ugly head in pivotal moment" via

No comments yet.

Leave a reply

More in Post Game
Sep 22, 1 day ago

The band is back together

Bruins forward Jake DeBrusk called the trip to China a second summer, and with good reason. Sure, the group that was fortunate enough to head overseas had quite the bonding experience both on and off the ice. But even the training sessions and the pa…

Sep 21, 2 days ago

Thoughts and observations from Bruins’ Training Camp

The China trip is over and the Bruins who were fortunate enough to head overseas have returned to their homes to get some well-needed rest. That won’t last long, however, as they return to Warrior Ice Arena on Saturday and reunite with their do…

Sep 20, 3 days ago

Axel Andersson getting big time camp experience

If you’re an up incoming defensive prospect, there are few players better to learn from — let alone be paired with in your first NHL game — than 41-year-old Stanley Cup Champion Zdeno Chara. This has been the case for Axel Andersson, th…