The clock at Staples Center is at it again.
We all remember the incident in February of 2012, right? Drew Doughty scored a game-winner as the buzzer sounded, and upon re-watching, it was clear that the clock had hiccuped a few times down the stretch. Dean Lombardi chalked it up to coulombs, conspiracy theorists claimed that the fix was in for the Kings, and everyone else recommended that LA get that thing repaired.
Now, the clock is in the spotlight again.
Clock slow to start beginning of 2nd in LA. 6 second delay. Adjustment made, but not enough. Kings scored end of period with 2 sec left...— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) December 10, 2016
...obviously had the clock functioned properly the late goal wouldn't have been scored. #controversy.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) December 10, 2016
Sure enough, the Senators were not happy, because Trevor Lewis scored with two seconds to go in the period to give LA a 3-1 lead.
My understanding is the Senators have already contacted the NHL in protest of the Kings 3rd goal because of clock issue.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) December 10, 2016
Human error? Clock error? It doesn’t matter at this point, and it probably won’t, given that the actual malfunction was so far from the event in question. The more pertinent point is: no, this wasn’t rigged, and there’s no conspiracy here. Why?
- LA had a two-goal lead. Why would you make the second period longer, knowing that the team losing by multiple goals is bound to get more chances?
- Ottawa utterly dominated the second period. Are you really suggesting that the clock operators wanted to make sure the Senators had a few more seconds to fire shots at Peter Budaj? Or did you know that Lewis would have one chance in the last six seconds of the period to make up for everything else?
- And on that note: LA was controlling the puck in the Senators’ zone well before the clock ticked below six seconds. The Kings waited until there were 4 seconds left before taking that shot; safe to say they wouldn’t have waited that long if there actually was less time on the clock.
So we’ll see what the league says — they’ll probably call it “human error” as they did after Doughty’s controversial game-winner in 2012 — but regardless, you can take off your tin foil hat if you’re an angry Senators fan.