Controversial Ruling Costs Blackhawks In 3-2 Game 3 Loss To Predators

By Chris Emma–

(CBS) Game 3 on Monday night was forced into a sudden death period for the Blackhawks and Predators after a controversial call allowed the home team a game-tying goal.

The Predators scored the equalizer with 5:52 remaining in the third period as Filip Forsberg’s shot found the back of the net, tying the game at 2-2. It would eventually force overtime, which saw the Predators win 3-2 with a goal from Kevin Fiala.

Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville challenged, stating that goaltender Corey Crawford was interfered with by a passing Viktor Arvidsson.

Ultimately, the call was upheld as the officials determined Crawford wasn’t interfered with. While contact to Crawford was clear — and appeared to have altered his positioning for the pivotal save — the judgement was made by Rule 69.2 of the NHL rule book.

Below is the official listing of Rule No. 69.2 of the NHL rule book:

69.2 an attacking player initiates intentional or deliberate contact with a goalkeeper, inside or outside of his goal crease. Incidental contact with a goalkeeper will be permitted, and resulting goals allowed, when such contact is initiated outside of the goal crease, provided the attacking player has made a reasonable effort to avoid such contact. The rule will be enforced exclusively in accordance with the on-ice judgement of the Referee(s), and not by means of video replay or review.

Officials likely determined that the contact was incidental and Arvidsson reasonably avoided altering Crawford. The official reasoning wasn’t immediately known.

The Predators scored their first goal on an unlikely bounce off the board behind Crawford, which resulted in a tally. Then came the tying goal late in regulation.

The Blackhawks held a 2-0 lead at the end of two periods, having scored a pair in the second frame. They previously hand’t scored a goal in the first 141 minutes of the series before Dennis Rasmussen scored on a feed from Marcus Kruger. Patrick Kane has Chicago’s other tally.

Now, the Blackhawks trail 3-0 in the series and have to save their season Thursday night in Nashville.

Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for CBSChicago.com. Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670 and like his Facebook page.

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