Sharks Blues Hockey

San Jose Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson (65), of Sweden, skates away after scoring the winning goal past St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington, left, during overtime in Game 3 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup Western Conference final series Wednesday, May 15, 2019, in St. Louis. The Sharks won 5-4 to take a 2-1 lead in the series. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

The Blues are responsible for not winning Game 3 of the Western Conference Final. Whether they’re responsible for losing it is another story entirely.

Absolutely, St. Louis whiffed on an opportunity to ice the game with an empty-net goal late in the third. And it cannot be denied, the Note permitted Logan Couture to notch the game-tying goal to send the affair into overtime.

But in all honesty, that hockey game should still be going.

Thanks to the most blatantly blown call in St. Louis sports since first base umpire Don Denkinger’s in the 1985 World Series, the Blues lost to the Sharks 5-4 in overtime Wednesday night to fall behind 2-1 in the best-of-seven-series. The controversy entered when San Jose’s Timo Meier knocked the puck to a teammate with his hand in front of the Blues goal, extending a scoring chance that ultimately became the game-winning goal for the Sharks.

Inexplicably, the obviously illegal hand pass was not reviewed using replay, and after a brief huddle on the ice, the referees allowed the goal to stand, thus ending the game as a win for the Sharks. According to the NHL, the play is not eligible to be reviewed for... um, reasons?

The official NHL GIFs account posted a GIF of the game-winning goal, but strategically cropped out the illegal hand pass portion of the play, an indescribably tone-deaf decision considering there isn't one person in the hockey world who failed to recognize the call was blown.

Except, of course, the referees on the ice who committed the error. 

Beyond series director Kay Whitmore's comments to the pool reporter, the NHL has not yet commented on the controversy, which isn't even the first major missed call that has gone in favor of the Sharks throughout these Stanley Cup Playoffs. But since the league apologized for the first one, I guess it figures that makes it all better?

I'm sure the eventual apology from the NHL for this particular blatant disregard for the rules of the sport directly affecting the outcome of a playoff game will bring plenty of solace for the Blues and their fans.

The reaction from the hockey community has been swift and decisive in favor of the Blues following the incident:

There's no corner of the hockey universe that doesn't agree: the Blues got completely jobbed Wednesday night. If only that sentiment was worth anything in the box score.

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