One look at the shade of red head coach Joel Quenneville's face turned after an apparent goal by the Chicago Blackhawks was disallowed in the second period didn't leave any doubt what he thought of the decision.
It was a bit of a weird play overall.
With the Blackhawks up 1-0 on the Los Angeles Kings in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals,
Initially, it was called a goal. After the referees consulted with each other, they decided that Toews' contact constituted goalie interference and the goal was disallowed. Goalie interference is not a reviewable play.
They did also do a video review, however, to make sure that Toews' initial shot did not cross the goal line first, according to the NHL's Situation Room, which offered this explanation:
At 3:22 of the second period in the Los Angeles Kings/Chicago Blackhawks game, the referee consulted video review to see if Jonathan Toews' initial shot entered the Los Angeles net. It was determined Toews' initial shot did not enter the net. The referee's original call on the ice was "good goal" but a discussion between the on-ice officials resulted in a "no goal" decision because Toews made incidental contact with Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick before the puck crossed the goal line. This is not a reviewable play therefore the decision on the ice stands - no goal and no penalty.
The whole review explanation doesn't seem to shed much light on the situation here.
Getting back to the goalie interference: The question the officials have to ask is if Toews made enough of an effort to avoid contact. There's a fair argument you could make that the contact was unavoidable due to the angle Toews took and the fact that Voynov blocked him from cutting back. It's pretty clear though that Quick's ability to make the save was impeded by the contact from Toews. It's just a strange play overall.
To me, this one is too close to call and probably could have gone either way. Seems like goaltender interference is one of those infractions that can vary from game to game in how it is interpreted.
The review process only seemed to compound the confusion, but again, this was a close call.
What will make the referees sweat a little bit is that, minutes later, the Kings tied the game, making that call seem even bigger in rather immediate fashion.
Perhaps they breathed a sigh of relief when Chicago regained the lead, but the fact remains, this call will be a controversial one when looking back on this game.