The Malik Report
by George Malik on 12/22/11 at 07:53 PM ET
Updated at 8:10 PM w/ Kerry Fraser talking about the goal: The points of controversy during the Detroit Red Wings’ 4-2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks involved a hit for which Niklas Kronwall was neither fined nor suspended and a goal after which Jimmy Howard was not penalized for punching one Jannik Hansen, but just when you thought we were going to put the controversy behind us, ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun (via RedWingsFeed) reports that the league agrees with Howard’s, ahem, position on Hansen’s fall and Alexander Edler’s subsequent 4-1 goal:
Upon further review, am told league believes Jannik Hansen goal should NOT have counted last night.
League’s feeling is that Jimmy Howard didn’t have a chance to make a save. Not worth a penalty to Van but should have been no goal.
When I say Hansen goal, of course I meant Hansen crashing into Howard and Edler scoring.
Update: TSN’s Kerry Fraser agrees that the goal should not have counted, too—but he’s no fan of Kronwall’s hit:
There are a couple of things at play here to determine if the goal scored by Alexander Edler should be allowed to stand. The first element to consider is if the referee, positioned along the goal line, determined that the attempted stick check by Henrik Zetterberg on the initial puck carrier, Jannik Hansen caused the Vancouver player to lose an edge and crash into Detroit net minder, Jimmy Howard.
If that were to be the case then rule 69.1 could apply to allow the goal to stand which states; “If an attacking player has been pushed, shoved, or fouled by a defending player so as to cause him to come into contact with the goalkeeper, such contact will not be deemed contact initiated by the attacking player for the purposes of this rule, provided the attacking player has made a reasonable effort to avoid such contact.”
Since Zetterberg did not push, shove or body check Hansen the only remaining alternative here would be if the referee deemed that Zetterberg had fouled the Vancouver player. Hansen was clearly within all criteria limits for a penalty shot to be assessed if it was determined that he was fouled from behind at this point.
There was no immediate reaction or arm raised by the referee to signal a penalty as Zetterberg reached with his stick while Hansen cut hard to the net and ultimately lost his edge and fell, sliding into Jimmy Howard as this video demonstrates. There should not have been a penalty to Zetterberg for his stick reach as contact, if any, was minimal at best and did not cause Hansen to lose an edge. The contact initiated by Hansen’s fall however, drove Howard deep into his net and definitely impaired Jimmy’s ability to defend his goal. The only signal made by the referee was pointing into the net to verify the scoring of a legal goal when Alexander Elder followed up on the play and put the rebound past both Hansen and Howard.
My call on this (and what I believe should have taken place) is incidental contact of the goalkeeper ruled when Hansen blew a tire and had no ability to avoid the Detroit goalkeeper. The resulting goal should have immediately been waved off and no penalty assessed to Hansen.
Vancouver scored this shorthanded goal with Ryan Kesler serving a minor penalty for roughing after being clocked by a Niklas Kronwall charge that went unpenalized if not undetected. Kronwall with back turned, left his feet prior to impact and went nuclear, vaulting up and into Kesler along the sidewall.
Fraser also goes to some length to state that he thinks Tomas Holmstrom’s “sneaky,” too.
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.