Goal goes up in Flames

By AL STRACHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 3:46 PM ET

 Once again, a crucial Stanley Cup game was embroiled in controversy.

 The Calgary Flames lost 3-2 in double overtime last night but appeared to take a 3-2 lead in the third period when Oleg Saprykin banked the puck off the skate of Martin Gelinas, who was driving to the crease.

  The overwhelming consensus of the media in the Saddledome was that the goal should have counted.

 The puck appeared to be about two inches over the goal line after it deflected off the skate of Gelinas and into the pad of Lightning goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin. The goalie's pad was well behind the goal line.

 On ABC, the announcers saw a replay that appeared to show the puck over the line and said, before the puck was dropped again, that they felt it was a goal.

 But the game was not delayed, while officials combed through every possible angle.

 "We reviewed a number of camera angles," said NHL executive vice-president Colin Campbell, "and only one showed the puck.

 "From that angle, it was inconclusive whether the puck crossed the goal line. Based on the angle of the image and the fact that the puck was in the air and on edge, there was insufficient evidence that the puck conclusively crossed the goal line."

 Flames coach Darryl Sutter, who came under fire from the league earlier in the week after he suggested that the New York office doesn't want the Flames to win, refused to say that his team had received a raw deal.

 "I looked it and that's got to be a conclusive play," he said. "I looked at it from two different angles. And unless you have a different one, you can't say it's a goal.

 "I mean, it's so close. You can't argue that point. I'm sure they did look at it.

 "So ..."


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