Clock snafu to begin second period impacts Kings-Sens

On Saturday, the Staples Center clock made its presence known after a period of disconcertingly prolonged calm.

This is, of course, already A Thing. “Clockgate” was among the most controversial endings to a Kings game as Drew Doughty scored on a buzzer beater to beat Curtis Sanford and Columbus in February, 2012. That goal, which broke a 2-2 tie, followed a brief but clearly noticeable clock stutter with 1.8 seconds remaining in the game. It was a story that quickly gained traction when General Manager Dean Lombardi explained to the LA Times that due to coloumbs – a scientific term of clock and time measurement that entered our vernacular that year – the clocks at Staples Center ensure that exactly 20 minutes are played in a period. “That is not an opinion -– that is science -– amazing device quite frankly,” he told the LA Times the day after the malfunction.

There have been other noticeable clock snafus at Staples Center, but this was the first time since the 2011-12 season that it had an impact on a goal being legitimate. Trevor Lewis scored with under a second remaining in the second period – the clock was reset to 1.8 seconds remaining, an eerie nod to the prior #clockgate – but because the Kings won by three goals, there was no major impact on the outcome of the game. Speaking downstairs after the game, the Kings didn’t indicate that they were cognizant of the clock issue, and Alec Martinez said he had “no idea” that anything was amiss.

“I don’t stare at the clock that often,” he said.

After the game, Los Angeles coach Darryl Sutter and Ottawa coach Guy Boucher spoke about #clockgate 2.0:

Darryl Sutter, on Lewis’ late goal, and the clock starting six seconds late:
On the goal? [Reporter: Yeah.] When I looked, there was still point-five, and then they reset it to one-eight, so there was lots of time. I think we’ve had enough trouble in here with clocks in prior years. Should be able to go one-one thousand, two-one thousand. It’s pretty crazy. [Reporter: Somebody said that the clock delayed six seconds to start the second period.] Yeah, I couldn’t tell you. Honest. I’ve got enough problem with my own clock, let alone that one.

Guy Boucher, on any concerns about the clock starting late in the second period:
Nope. I’ll be honest with you, at that point for us we’ve just got to shut it down. We keep it at 1, it wasn’t about getting a goal there it was about getting off the ice. We had done the job in the second period, we had looked very good, we had the momentum, we needed to get into the third period with a one-goal lead. We’ve done it so many times this year coming back so I was confident we could come back, so no. I’m not looking at clocks, I’m not looking at penalties, I’m looking at ourselves just doing better. On the powerplay we missed some opportunities to shoot, we missed some open nets, and on the penalty kill we’re usually better than that and we can’t give that goal in the last seconds of the second period. So I’d rather look at what we can control than hope that the luck turns our way.

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