NHL

Stanley Cup: Bednar labels power play call 'a tough one' after Avalanche lose Game 5

By Sports Desk June 25, 2022

Colorado Avalanche coach Jared Bednar was frustrated with side's 3-2 home defeat to the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final on Friday.

The Avalanche could have sealed the series with a win at Ball Arena, but a late Ondrej Palat goal secured a vital win for the Lightning to keep it alive.

Bednar was unhappy with a call in the second period that left his team facing a four-on-three power play, from which Nikita Kucherov scored after a tripping violation against Cale Makar.

"I didn't love that call, just because I don't think there was any intent there," Bednar said after the game. "I don't even think he was checking that guy [Palat]. Looked to me like he kind of tripped over his stick.

"It's a tough one. They got their only power-play goal on that one. So that hurt, stung a little bit. But it is what it is. You gotta roll with the punches."

Makar was also clearly displeased by the call against him, but like his coach, insisted his team have to put it behind them and think about Game 6.

"I'm not here to talk about the refs," Makar said. "We have to battle through that. It's playoffs, there's going to be discrepancies game to game with different people. It is what it is. You can't get your emotions taken into that.

"For me, that [tripping penalty] doesn't happen very often but at the end of the day you have to refocus."

It is the second game in a row in which the losing team has felt a crucial call went against them, with Lightning coach Jon Cooper walking out of a media conference following Game 4 in which he believed Nazem Kadri's overtime goal should have been chalked off for too many men on the ice.

Avs captain Gabriel Landeskog said Colorado should resist complaining about the officiating, suggesting that is something for their opponents to do. 

"I'm not getting into [the refereeing decisions]," Landeskog said. "It's something they [the Lightning] can continue to do; we're not doing that. We're focusing on our game.

"We'll watch some video tomorrow, make sure we're fine-tuning some things going into the next game here."

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