Update on clock controversy

So, I land in St. Louis to read about coulombs. Makes me wish it had been a longer flight. Since I’ve been out of range for the last four hours or so, I’ll refer you to pieces from ESPN.com and The Columbus Dispatch that do a nice job of summing up last night’s controversy, in which an extra half-second appeared to have been added to the end of the game. Drew Doughty scored the game-winning goal with 0.4 seconds remaining.

NHL looking into Kings’ clock error (ESPN.com)

A Clockwork Strange (The Columbus Dispatch)

Essentially, there are two camps in this argument. One side, led by Dean Lombardi, argues that nothing at all went wrong with the clock, and that it simple re-calibrated itself at a time that made it appear as though extra time was added. Thus the “coulombs” theory. The other side, led by the league, argues that there was some type of malfunction and that the goal should not have counted. Then there’s Columbus general manager Scott Howson, who, in a blog item, unfortunately raised the idea that there might have been some foul play when he wrote that the incident was an “amazing coincidence.” It doesn’t take much of a sarcasm meter to determine what Howson was alluding to, which is rather unfortunate given that the time-keepers are employed by the league, not the teams. To his credit, Howson pulled the blog item from publication today (credit to Yahoo’s Greg Wyshynski for the pre-pull screen cap).

What will come of all this? Probably nothing. All sides agree that the result of the game won’t be changed, and the focus at this point seems to be on making sure that another incident does not take place. Everyone should be able to agree on that much.

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