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Kronwall's controversial goal lifts Wings

Last-second goal helps Detroit defeat the Kings at Joe Louis Arena

Saturday, 01.18.2014 / 10:52 PM ET / News
By Bill Roose  - Managing Editor | DetroitRedWings.com
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Kronwall\'s controversial goal lifts Wings
Niklas Kronwall is the first to congratulate goalie Jimmy Howard after the Red Wings 3-2 shootout win over the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Detroit Red Wings)

DETROIT – For a team that hasn’t had much luck this season, the Red Wings got the mother of all breaks Saturday night.

With 26.1 seconds left in regulation, Niklas Kronwall scored a power-play goal that resembled something from the old trick-shot commercials by basketball legends Larry Bird and Michael Jordan.

“That’s not something that you try to do too often,” said Kronwall of his game-tying goal against the Los Angeles Kings at Joe Louis Arena.

Kronwall’s shot from the left point rocketed high off of Jarret Stoll’s stick and into the netting behind Kings’ goalie Jonathan Quick. As the puck descended it struck the back of Quick’s helmet and into the back of the net.

“They get a goal that shouldn't have been a goal,” said Quick, who stopped 33 shots. “I'm sure we'll get one back here in the future. It's the way it works. Sometimes you get the bounce, sometimes you don't.”

Had an official seen the puck hit the netting, the play would have been whistled dead. However, the play was called a goal on the ice, and the NHL said in a statement: "Video of the play appears to show the puck hitting the protective mesh above the glass before deflecting off goaltender Jonathan Quick and into the Los Angeles net. While the Situation Room examined the video, this is not a reviewable play therefore the referee's call on the ice stands."

The goal sent the game to overtime and eventually to the skills competition where Red Wings forward Tomas Tatar scored the only goal for a 3-2 shootout win. Jimmy Howard stopped all three Kings’ attempts to go with his 30 saves through OT.

Trailing by a goal, it looked like the Red Wings were on their way to losing for the third straight time. However, Kings forward Dwight King put Detroit on the power play when he inadvertently covered the puck with his glove at 18:15 of the third. Detroit’s power play was 0-for-25 before Kronwall’s fifth goal of the season, which was set up by Henrik Zetterberg and Patrick Eaves.

“Hank set me up for a one-timer and I tried to hit the net and I think it went off their stick or something like that,” Kronwall said. “I didn’t know where it went. Skating around the ice right after and all of a sudden the puck was in their net and nobody really knew what to think. I think everyone thought it went off the mesh and came back for some reason. But they called it a goal, and you know what, at this stage we’ll take it.”

To most in the arena it was quite obvious what happened on the quirky play. Kronwall’s shot from the point hit the netting about 29-feet above the ice surface but apparently not one of the four game officials managed to track the puck.

“I didn’t see anything on the goal but the guys told me after I guess it kissed the top of the mesh or something,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “We couldn’t see it from where we were; the referees obviously didn’t see it so they didn’t know. But you get breaks against you lots, we had a number called back this year and that was a break we got and if you work hard over time you get breaks.”

Kings defenseman Drew Doughty might have been the only person on the ice that saw the puck carom off the netting as he raced to referee Dan O’Halloran to point to where the puck went out of play.

“They just said they didn't see it. It's unfortunate,” said Doughty of the officials. “I've never seen that before, that's for sure. It's crappy to lose a game that way.”

Follow Bill Roose on Twitter | @Bill_Roose

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 77 17 49 -6 66
P. Datsyuk 63 26 39 12 65
T. Tatar 82 29 27 6 56
G. Nyquist 82 27 27 -11 54
J. Abdelkader 71 23 21 3 44
N. Kronwall 80 9 35 -4 44
R. Sheahan 79 13 23 -3 36
D. Helm 75 15 18 7 33
D. DeKeyser 80 2 29 11 31
S. Weiss 52 9 16 -2 25
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Howard 23 13 11 .910 2.44
P. Mrazek 16 9 2 .918 2.38

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