“I would have bet my life” on a failed challenge

Bruins

“They’re too good a team to just give them goals.”

Rod Brind’Amour protests a call with an official during the first period of a previous game (Game 2) of the Bruins-Hurricanes playoff series. AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker

Following the Bruins’ 5-2 win over the Hurricanes on Sunday night – two-game first-round series apiece – Carolina head coach Rod Brind’Amour made candid remarks about the officiating in the NHL.

The controversy began late in the second period, just as Boston forward Jake DeBrusk scored to tie the game, 2-2. The goal was chaotic and only resulted from a goal rush (with DeBrusk eventually applying the finish).

Brind’Amour believed Carolina goaltender Antti Raanta was interfered with, but replays produced an inconclusive investigation into who hit Raanta’s left leg (causing him to move).

Still, the Hurricanes coach took on his coach’s challenge anyway. After review, the goal was upheld and Carolina was charged with delaying the game. A second Hurricanes penalty 51 seconds later gave the Bruins a 5-on-3 that continued into the third period. And just before the final power play ended, Brad Marchand scored what turned out to be Boston’s game-winning goal.

Afterward, Brind’Amour remained unchanged in his opinion of DeBrusk’s goal.

“I would have bet my life on that one” Brind’Amour said of the challenge. “It’s tough. It’s clear, especially the view we saw afterwards, that [the puck’s] between his pads and loose. I’m all good on that. But the guy [DeBrusk] came sideways, pushes her pads, squirts the puck, slaps her in. It’s a little different if the guy [was] coming up front and was actually playing the puck. You can’t play the puck when it’s between his legs to the side and knock the side goalie down.

The NHL cited Rule 69.7 to support the appeal. The rule states that “In a rebound situation, or when a goaltender and one or more attacking players simultaneously attempt to play a loose puck, whether inside or outside the crease, a incidental contact will be allowed and any goal scored as a result of it will be allowed.

Brind’Amour remained skeptical, calling the goal a “gift” to the Bruins.

“They’re too good a team to just give them goals,” he said. “We won’t stand a chance if that happens.”

Game 5 of the series kicks off in Carolina Tuesday at 7 p.m.