“I thought it was in”: Leafs react to goal that didn't count

May 13 2023, 3:36 pm

The Toronto Maple Leafs’ season might still be alive if Friday night’s controversial “no goal” call had gone in their favour.

Down 2-1 in the second period, Morgan Rielly appeared to tie the game up. The Leafs defenceman took the puck to the net, and then it disappeared under the pad of Florida Panthers goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky.

After a lengthy video replay, it was determined that the puck didn’t cross the goal line before the referee’s whistle had blown.

The thing is, the instant replay footage appears to show otherwise.

Images from certain angles actually show the puck fully crossing the line.

While Toronto general manager Kyle Dubas was visibly infuriated with the call, fans at Scotiabank Arena chanted “bullsh*t” and littered the ice with debris.

After the game ended in an overtime loss and elimination for the postseason, the Leafs players also seemed baffled by the officials’ decision on the play.

“I thought it was in,” Leafs captain John Tavares said after the game. “I was heading to the net. I was right there.”

Tavares concluded that “obviously, they [the officials] looked at it and had their reasoning.”

Meanwhile, Sheldon Keefe said he was told there was no clear view of the puck crossing the line before the play was blown dead.

“The explanation I got was that there wasn’t a clear and conclusive view of the initial shot showing it was in. There was that,” he said. “The other shot of the puck in the net, they said, was after the play and the play was dead. That’s it.”

The NHL later released a statement saying the “referee deemed the play dead prior to the puck crossing the Florida line.”

As for Rielly, the player who would have been credited with the big goal, he offered a minimal explanation to reporters.

“It happened quickly, and obviously they reviewed it. So, it is what it is.”

With files from Daily Hive’s Rob Williams

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