Oilers Robbed by Ridiculous Rules: How to Fix Replay
May 4, 2017, 12:26 PM ET [29 Comments]
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The Oilers game last night was everything wrong with instant replay in the NHL.
First, the Oilers challenged a goal for interference. While it wasn't anything major, they were right to challenge it, since goals like that have been called back all season.
The NHL is nothing if not wildly inconsistent, so of course it was no goal.
Now the Oilers don't have a challenge left because they were wrong. Obviously this was put in to avoid abuse of the system, but it really wasn't thought through very well because it doesn't work fairly if the NHL screws up a call.
And not screwing up a call is the entire reason for video replay in the first place, so that's unacceptable.
On the next Ducks goal, it was offside. Again, it should count because calling off goals for minor infractions in a league starved for offense is incredibly dumb, but based on how the NHL has done this atrocity all season, that goals should have been waived off.
But because the NHL screwed up the first goal, the second goal counted too.
This is idiotic. The Oilers not only deserved to win, they were robbed of a victory.
If the NHL wants to fix the problem, it's really easy:
Eliminate the ability for a coach to challenge, and just have someone review every goal and play to make sure they're legit. If they need more time, then signal that the play is under review.
Basically they could act like a goal judge - what's so hard about that?
Furthermore, they need to better define what is goaltender interference. All penalties are subjective calls anyways, so this should be subjective as well. Just let the goal judge decide and be done with it. Who cares?
Our quest for unfailing accuracy is unrealistic and pointless.
As for offsides, this is even easier. Only call back egregious violations. If a guy is significantly offside - in the Matt Duchene style - then call the goal back. But if it's at all in question, then just let the goal count.
Who cares if a goal is slightly offside? Such fidelity to a stupid rule is ridiculous. If a goal is less than six inches off side, if you can't clearly tell without a freeze-frame, then let the goal count.
The spirit of the rule isn't about minor and pedantic offsides. It's about games being ruined by horribly ridiculous calls. So let all but the off-sidesiest of plays count.
But back to last night: while we're playing by these rules, the Oilers were robbed.