Well that was an upsetting end to the season. Obviously I wanted an Avs win (and, like a lot of other hockey fans, I was rooting for #Lumbus).
Minnesota’s Zach Parise scored the first goal of the game. Ryan O’Reilly would answer with his sixth of the season with less than two minutes remaining in the first. During the second, the Avs appeared to score a second goal to take the lead, but after review, it was taken away. I disagreed with the call-but it turns out that while one referee called it a good goal, another made the official call of no goal on the ice. That meant that Toronto had to find “conclusive evidence that it was not kicked in intentionally.” I don’t think it was intentional, but I can see where, in the situation room, things would have been split, and therefore why they would have decided that the call on the ice should stand. I don’t like it, and I don’t understand why it was called a no goal on the ice (where it looked to me as though it went off his foot but was not kicked,) but there you have it. The game was still tied at one. After that, the Avs seemed to really deflate, and they eventually allowed a powerplay goal (not a good goal by Varls, but he did make some spectacular saves throughout the game). In the final, dying seconds, Minnesota scored in the empty net to cement their victory. With two seconds and change remaining, they decided to do a sort of ceremonial faceoff with Milan Hejduk, and allowed the Avs to run off the clock.
I was not impressed with the officiating in this game. I was sitting in the third row, which meant I had a damn good view of some mighty fine “that should have been a penalty” action. (I’m not saying it was all from Minnesota. I saw the Avs get away with a couple of things too. However, Minnesota became more and more reckless when they realized they weren’t getting called, and they got away with some ridiculous things.) To make things even more infuriating, the officials started sneering and belligerently shaking their heads when the crowd would boo perceived missed calls. (I’ve been to a couple hundred hockey games in my short life, and I’ve never seen that reaction.) There weren’t a lot of penalties called, but it still was frustrating to see some of the things players were getting away with.
After the game, players gave away their gameworn jerseys to lucky selected fans. It’s always a nice touch to end a season, and I like the chance to get to cheer for individual players one last time. Now, it’s the dreaded offseason, coming much too soon again. Remember, I’ll still be posting (player reviews, draft predictions, free agency predictions, etc), so keep checking back here every couple days to argue, agree, or just plain sob about the lack of Avs hockey. Stay classy, Avs fans.