The Free Press, Mankato, MN


April 29, 2014

Frederick column: Bad calls will happen; deal with it

If you’re wondering how to deal with the no-calls (holding and offsides) at the end of regulation of Game 5 between the Wild and Avalanche on Saturday night, read the words of former Minnesota State defenseman Chad Brownlee:

“That’s the game of hockey. We make mistakes, and so do the refs. They’re human, too. It happened. It’s an emotional game.

“Things like that are going to happen. How you deal with it shows what kind of hockey player you are.”

Since this column is being written prior to Monday night’s Game 6, I can’t be sure how the Wild dealt with the plays that led to Colorado’s late game-tying goal and eventual overtime victory in Denver.

But I have seen how the fans have handled it so far.

It’s tough to see your favorite team give up a lead and lose a game because of what you perceive to be a missed or wrong call by the officials.

Vikings fans are still seething, nearly 40 years later, about Drew Pearson’s supposed push-off that allowed him to catch the NFL’s original Hail Mary from Roger Staubach in the 1975 playoffs.

Packers fans won’t soon forget the Fail Mary that took place in Seattle two seasons ago when replacement refs were in charge.

It sure looked like the Wild’s Charlie Coyle was held or interfered with — perhaps mugged would be the appropriate term — as he tried to chase down a loose puck and score an empty-net goal in Saturday’s final minutes. And it sure looked like Paul Stastny was offsides on the rush that led to the Avs’ game-tying goal.

“That’s the way it goes. … Tough luck,” Brownlee said seven years ago.

That was in reference to the worst non-call I can remember from a Minnesota State hockey game.

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