Matt Murray returned to the net for the Toronto Maple Leafs in a game on Friday and helped the Leafs pick up a big win. The victory doesn’t come without controversy as Murray is being accused of intentionally knocking the net off, not once, but three times during the game.
Some reactions to what went down on Friday afternoon include Sean McIndoe (Down Goes Brown) of The Athletic writing, “I’d say Matt Murray just pushed the net off on purpose again but I wouldn’t want to be accused of goalie shaming so I’ll just say it’s a weird coincidence that this keeps happening to him.” Michael Russo of The Athletic writes, “What do you know? Matt Murray knocks the net off for a third time tonight. Fans losing their skulls.” Wild head coach Dean Evason said he absolutely believes Murray did it on purpose.
When asked about the controversial plays and not one penalty being called by the officials for the net coming off three separate times, Evason said, “100 percent, the second one for sure.” He added that Murray is known for doing this and noted, “You can’t knock the net off three times and not get anything out of it. It doesn’t make any sense.”
Evason and Wild fans are livid because that was sustained offensive ice time the Wild had in Toronto’s zone with opportunities to score. Because the net came off, the play was called dead. Not only that but all momentum is lost each time that happens. Everyone seems to think Murray knew it, which is exactly why he did it.
What’s so intriguing about this is that it doesn’t feel like Murray should have to stoop so low to help his team out. He’s played incredibly well since returning from injury and his willingness to do this is taking away from what he’s accomplishing while he’s 4-0-1 since his return to the lineup. That includes a game-saving stop in the final seconds to seal the victory for Toronto on Friday.
At some point, the NHL and the officials are going to have to wise up to this if Murray is known for this trick. It’s a blatant attempt to stop the game in its tracks and throw the other team off. It’s also supposed to be a penalty. He got away with it Friday and maybe he’ll ease up on deploying that tactic if he knows he’s now drawn attention to it. The three plays are certainly going to make headlines and refs will be on high alert. But, until he doesn’t get away with it, one has to assume he’ll keep trying.
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November 25, 2022 at 5:16 pm
Actually the third one resulted in the leafs not getting an empty net try so I highly doubt he did that at that time. That’s his style to push off and aggressively go post to post. Get the post anchors stronger
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