Lightning coach Joan Cooper is looking to move forward after his comments provoked controversy after losing to Tampa Bay’s Game 4 in the Stanley Cup final on Wednesday.
“It simply came to our notice then [Colorado] Want to get better at Overtime? There is no question they did ” Cooper said during a media availability on Thursday. “It simply came to our notice then. Often you make them, sometimes you get them. Colorado led 3-1 in the series because they had too many breaks. Good for them. The same thing happens when you make them. Game-Winner Unfortunate Non-Call. That’s how you get breaks. ”
“It’s the way of the game, and you can not talk about it. You turn the page and go ahead, so let’s go. That mountain is a little higher.
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Cooper’s post-game comments lasted two minutes on Wednesday night, taking a question before leaving. Najem Kadri spent most of that time postponing his comments to a press conference on Thursday, suggesting that the game-winning overtime goal should not be counted because there were so many men on the snow in the Colorado avalanche.
“You’re going to see what I mean when you see the winning goal,” Cooper said Wednesday night. “And it breaks my heart for the players, because we still have to play.”
Playing from behind the lightning during this playoff run is nothing new. Tampa Bay lost 3-2 in the opening round to the Toronto Maple Leafs, winning 7 games on the way forward. Tampa Bay lost their first two games to the New York Rangers in the conference finals, having previously won four consecutive games to secure the Stanley Cup berth.
“If there’s a team that can do this, it’s this team” Said Lightning forward Pat Maroon.
The NHL released a statement after the game justifying the referee’s no-call. The statement said that most men on ice penalties are discreet calls that are not subject to video review.
“When discussing the winning goal, every four officers advised not to see too many men on the snow condition in the game,” the statement said.
Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar shared a similar sentiment during media availability on Thursday. Bednar noted that line shifts, such as those in the game of hockey, occur at all times.
“It’s part of the game,” Bednar said. “It simply came to our notice then. You are changing on the fly, everything happens. You watch the clip, you get that clip back – and I’m already done it many times to see exactly what they are talking about – and the two guys jump in as their D comes out of the snow from the zone far from Tampa. I count 7-6 in one step. So that’s what it is. That’s the way the game is played. I do not see it as a break or a break. In fact I see it as nothing.
Lightning will fight for their playoff lives in Stanley Cup Final Game 5 in Denver on Friday night at 8pm ET.