Thursday, February 2, 2012

Staples Center Timing Oddity Gives Los Angeles Kings Win Over Columbus Blue Jackets

Los Angeles Kings fans at Staples Center were treated to extra hockey on Wednesday night, but not in the traditional sense of overtime.

The Kings and Columbus Blue Jackets were locked in a 2-2 tie and seemed poised for an extra period of play as time was winding down in regulation.

Instead, a suspicious timing error appeared to have extended the third period of the contest by fractions of a second, giving Kings defenseman Drew Doughty just enough time to slap a game-winner past Blue Jackets goalie Curtis Sanford for a buzzer-beating score.

Or did he? After all, Los Angeles is the city of the fashionably late.

Replays conclusively demonstrate the game clock appeared to freeze at 1.8 seconds, mysteriously restarting moments later just as oddly as it had stopped.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Referee Kelly Sutherland Injured by Puck to Face: Should Visors be Mandatory in the NHL?

NHL Referee Kelly Sutherland was injured during today's Rangers-Sabres hockey contest.

With sharp blades, whizzing pucks and weapon-like sticks, hockey referees and linesmen have one of the most dangerous officiating jobs in sports, which we were unfortunately reminded of on Wednesday night.

Just 5:37 into the first period of the New York Rangers vs. Buffalo Sabres contest, Sutherland found himself directly in the line of fire, as a shot attempt was deflected off a Rangers player, careening directly into Sutherland's face.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Miami Heat beat Chicago Bulls after Missed Free Throws, a Key Inadvertent Whistle and a Jump Ball Violation No-Call

With 16 seconds remaining in a 94-93 intraconference matchup between the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat, someone blew a whistle.
Exactly who produced the sound remains unclear—ESPN play-by-play man and former referee Mike Breen briefly suspected a fan was to blame: "Earlier in the game, I thought I heard a whistle from the stands."

With his team leading by a single point, Heat forward LeBron James had just missed two consecutive free throws, prompting a mad scramble for the rebound between Heat and Bulls players below Miami's basket.

Miami's Dwayne Wade attempted to save the ball while falling out of bounds, raising his arms in bewilderment when that whistle sounded, assuming the official positioned along the endline had ruled the ball out of bounds, possession to Chicago.

Instead, raising his arms as if to declare, "It wasn't me," was referee David Jones, the lead official. Meanwhile, slot (center) official Monty McCutchen did not react to the whistle's blast.