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UPDATED: Trotz livid after controversial offside goal, NHL admits error

Feb 18, 2013, 5:17 PM EDT

There was some major controversy in Denver during the Avalanche’s 6-5 win over Nashville this afternoon.

At the 3:18 mark of the second period, Colorado center Matt Duchene scored on a breakaway after what appeared to be a blown offside call:

As you can see, Nashville head coach Barry Trotz was furious with the decision made by linesman Derek Amell.

UPDATE: According to Josh Cooper of The Tennessean, Trotz said the league told him the play should’ve been called offside.

Here’s a still image of the play, courtesy Jim Diamond of the Nashville Examiner:


Duchene’s goal set the tone for what would be a wild second period.

The Avs and Preds combined for seven goals in a span of 15:52 — pretty remarkable considering Nashville was the league’s lowest-scoring team (1.87 goals per game) heading into today’s contest, and Colorado was 26th (2.31).

To give you a sense of the reaction at the Pepsi Center, here’s Mike Chambers of the Denver Post:

  1. rdurk86 - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    Only thing I see is that it hit the Nashville D man’s leg/stick before it went into the zone. Maybe the ref thought he played it back into his own end.

    • bcsteele - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:33 PM

      I agree with you that must have been what he thought, cause I agree with the reporter…worst none call I’ve seen for sure.

    • stakex - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:28 PM

      Thats the only possible explination. The linesman saw the whole thing clear as day… so either he thought it was played into the zone by Nashville, or he bet on the Avs.

    • elvispocomo - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:29 PM

      But only if it’s an intentional pass back into their own zone does that ever apply. You see puck bounce or deflect off of players and go back into their own zone but it always still counts as offside until the offensive players clear. Plain and simple just a horrible call.

  2. jeremyroenickdanceparty - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:36 PM

    Rule 83.1 “If a player legally carries or passes the puck back into his own defending zone while a player of the opposing team is in such defending zone, the off-side shall be ignored and play permitted to continue.”

    Linesman must have thought that the Nashville D intentionally played it back. It does look like it touches him.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:41 PM

      This applies when the puck starts in the D zone and a player on the D team carries it BACK in (key word back). I just can’t see this being what the ref thought. Even if the D man touched it the puck hadn’t been in the zone to begin with.

      Worst part, game ends 6-5 Avs.

      • jeremyroenickdanceparty - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:52 PM

        you are wrong. the rule doesn’t say anything about where the play originated. in this case, back most definitely refers to the relative motion of the play, not its origination (i.e. forward is toward the offensive zone and back is towards your D zone)

      • jeremyroenickdanceparty - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:58 PM

        you’re probably thinking about rule 83.2 which refers to deflections back into the D zone by the defending team. different scenario, different rule.

      • hockeywithdrawal - Feb 19, 2013 at 8:07 AM

        Maybe – you might be right…I’m thinking of when the puck leaves the D zone and an offensive player is still caught in the zone, but then the puck comes BACK into the zone before he ever leaves it…he’s no longer offsides, doesn’t need to ‘tag up’. That’s what I was reading by that rule…and it seems different than simply beating the puck into the zone, regardless of who passed it back. Either way, I’m hoping there is at the very least an explanation given by the refs or Toronto, even if that explanation is “he blinked and didn’t see the offsides”.

    • elvispocomo - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:32 PM

      That is the only possible explanation, but even then when have you ever seen that apply when it’s not an obvious pass back into the defender’s own zone. Any deflections, bounces, tips, etc that bounce off a defender but come from an offensive player always count as offside. The linesman just blew it.

  3. bmscalise - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:50 PM

    Pens fans everywhere sympathize. Just be glad that an excusable non-call on an offsides didn’t cost you a playoff game, Nashville fans.

    • Mike Halford - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:51 PM

      Speaking of, Tony Sericolo was working this game! He didn’t make the call, but he was there.

  4. scionofflame - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:04 PM

    Calls and games like this are the biggest reason coaches need the ability to challenge.

    Preds lost the game by one goal. One goal that a challenge call might have prevented. Depressing.

    • lesleyvissersfacelift - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:30 PM

      A challenge rule is a nice idea, but aren’t all goals reviewed in Toronto? Why wasn’t the goal disallowed by those guys? It was a clear offsides and could have easily been corrected via replay. This is much more clear cut than last year’s controversy in LA when the Kings recalibrated the coloumbs. And if the answer is that the NHL only reviews if the puck fully crossed the goal line, why weren’t either of the on-ice referees skeptical enough to have Toronto review the whole play? If the rules don’t allow for this type of review the NHL should consider making a change this summer.

      • scionofflame - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:26 PM

        Because there was nothing wrong with the goal. He beat Mason fair and square…it was the call on the blue line that mattered, and that’s not reviewable. Apparently.

      • 950003cups - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:41 PM

        Derek Amell is the Jim Joyce of the NHL.

        Tomorrow we gonna see Amell crying as he comes out to center ice and hugs Trotz and apologizes??

        (Jim Joyce was the MLB umpire who blew a call like this on June 2, 2010 and ruined Armando Galarraga’s perfect game on the last play of the game)

  5. tdrusher225 - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:20 PM

    I hate linesmen so much. They only have 2 jobs and they suck at them both.

    • hockinj25 - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:55 PM

      For every blown call like this there are hundreds of correct calls.

  6. blurwild - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:18 PM

    “I feel sorry for the dude…” yet I’m going to waste no time by being the first person to tweet out the linesman’s name. Classy move Mike Chambers.

    Maybe save it for the paper, that way you are still being a faithful journalist while also hiding the info somewhere that no one will read it.

  7. andidee15 - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:31 PM

    Even as an Avs fan, I’m bewildered. I mean, we’ll take it, but it must have been opposite day at the Pepsi Center or something. Such a blown call.

  8. dolanster - Feb 18, 2013 at 8:03 PM

    I don’t understand why ALL goals aren’t reviewable for any reason. There aren’t that many goals scored and fewer still where there’s any questionable action whatsoever. Maybe one goal out of 4 or 5 has a question. Look at the replay like everyone else and make the right call. There’s no excuse not to.

  9. jcmeyer10 - Feb 18, 2013 at 8:07 PM

    Even the Av’s player slowed up a bit as if waiting for a whistle.

  10. govtminion - Feb 18, 2013 at 8:34 PM

    Incredible… The Preds have every right to be furious about this mess.

  11. blkeskimo1785 - Feb 18, 2013 at 8:49 PM

    Perhaps that was a makeup call for the previous game in Denver? The puck bounced off the referee, went right to Shane Doan, and the Coyotes won it in OT. Terrible missed call, though.

    • sasquatch678 - Feb 18, 2013 at 11:22 PM

      I’m still completely befuddled by the entire game. Clearly a rule change is needed to allow for review of any play that leads to a goal. I agree with Chambers; that was ludicrous.

  12. indianhead1992 - Feb 19, 2013 at 2:19 AM

    I feel bad for Nashville, they lost that game by 1 and that was a clear offsides. their are two things we need to look at here, 1) refs make mistakes they are humans 2) they still gave up 5 other goals. cant just blame the loss on the zebra

    • hockeywithdrawal - Feb 19, 2013 at 8:04 AM

      Agree and disagree…there are a lot of close calls in this league…and this was NOT one of them. Clear, easy call. So, I do believe a LOT of people are owed an explanation on this one, and I think waayyyyyy too many times people accept the “I call ’em as I see ’em” line as an explanation.

      There were 5 other goals they let in, and they scored 5 other goals to match those. While you can’t blame just the ref, these games shouldn’t be decided by a call that is that far off.

  13. vstar1us - Feb 19, 2013 at 9:00 PM

    Holy hockey pucks get over it, it is a game not world peace!
    Now everyone should know the importance of every game, and the Whole NHL blew it by striking!
    They had all summer to prevent this crap….

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