New York Islanders coach Barry Trotz lamented a blatant missed call that almost certainly accelerated a loss Tuesday night in their Stanley Cup playoffs semifinal series against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
It came in the second period when there were seven Lightning players (teams play with five skaters, plus a goalie) on the ice as Tampa Bay winger Ondřej Palát scored a goal that gave his team a 2-1 lead.
“Obviously you guys know there was too many men on the ice there,” Trotz said after the game, according to ESPN. “They had seven guys. Disappointed in that. But we tried to battle through.”
Trotz was very animated on the bench after the referees and line judges missed the call. Though the NHL has replay reviews in place, the call for too many men on the ice isn’t one that is eligible for coaches’ challenges or referee-initiated reviews.
The Islanders would allow two more goals before they added one late in the game in 4-2 loss that evened the series at 1-1.
“The second goal hurt quite a bit,” Trotz said after the game. “(Because) if they get the third one, there’s a little bit more separation.”
Added Islanders forward Matt Martin: “It was missed. That’s hockey. It happens. Nothing we can do about it. Move on.”
But it wasn’t just the Lightning who may have benefitted from questionable officiating. The Islanders’ game-tying goal in the first period came on a power play after Lightning center Brayden Point was called for goalie interference, even though Point was checked by an Islanders player into goalie Semyon Varlamov.
“We all saw the call,” Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. “It was a tough decision for the refs to make. Especially when they tell you he put his hands up to hit the goalie, when he clearly didn’t do that. It’s a game of high rate of speed, and the refs are in a bind about that. But in those situations, you have to weather through that. In the end, you have to kill the penalty off, and we didn’t.”
Game 3 in the series will be played Thursday at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Islanders irked by missed call in NHL playoff loss to Lightning