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Edmonton Oilers

McDavid Says NHL Must Clarify Rules After Debatable Offside Call

After allowing the St. Louis Blues to tie up the hockey game late in the third period, the Oilers eventually lost in a shootout, but not before scoring in overtime, thinking they’d won the game and the officials called off the goal because they ruled Connor McDavid didn’t have possession of the puck when entering the zone on the winning goal, thus putting himself offside. It was a confusing call when you see some of the other goals that were allowed to stand in seasons past, and McDavid is certainly confused noting that since he was a kid, he believed the rule was you could enter the zone followed by the puck if you had possession of it, something he believes he had.

McDavid was asked about the loss and the controversial call after the game. He noted, “the league has got to clarify some of these rules. What’s a kick? What’s offside? What’s goalie interference? It kind of depends on the night I guess.”

You can see the play in the video below. It’s easy to understand why McDavid thinks he still had possession but he did acknowledge that it was a judgment call made by the officials. He didn’t come right out and say he didn’t agree, but instead chose to voice his opinion on the lack of clarity on the rules, then said the team never should have been in that position, to begin with. In that respect, McDavid was right. A costly turnover by Darnell Nurse in the dying seconds of the game where the Oilers were on the power play cost the team a win in regulation.

The hockey world is reacting to the McDavid call. It’s the hot topic coming out of all NHL action on Thursday night. Many believe the goal this is being compared to — Cale Makar scoring against the Oilers in last season’s playoffs — is similar. Some are saying it isn’t. Makar carried the puck across the line, but it was ruled he didn’t have possession so his own player tagged up and got back onside. It was only then Makar then touched the puck and got possession. In this case, the refs say McDavid didn’t have possession, put himself offside, and then got possession (or Leon Draisaitl did).

Clearly, it’s confusing enough to the point that Jeff Marek of Sportsnet chimed in a suggested that maybe the NHL should get rid of offsides altogether.

Next: Would You Trade Oilers’ Top Four for the Maple Leafs’ Top Four?

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