We know the Academy Awards are coming up, but this was just silly.
One look at the box score and one will see the Detroit Red Wings gave up a 5-2 lead en route to a wild 7-6 overtime loss to the New York Islanders at Barclays Center on Friday night. But it was one play in the third period that set the stage for a pathetic performance by Detroit’s penalty killing – matched only by the pathetic flop that preceded it.
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At 13:27 of the third, Islanders forward Cal Clutterbuck delivered a cross check to Red Wings forward Tyler Bertuzzi, who then retaliated with a two-handed chop to Clutterbuck’s thigh.
As if shot by a sniper, Clutterbuck immediately fell to the ice, resulting in Bertuzzi receiving a five-minute match penalty and a game misconduct. The Islanders then scored a whopping four goals on the man-advantage to take the lead.
Detroit was able to salvage a point with defenseman Mike Green’s goal with 30 seconds remaining, but Brock Nelson’s third goal of the night gave the Islanders the extra point and moved them nine points ahead of Detroit for the final wild-card playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Clutterbuck has been known to embellish before, getting fined $2,000 in January of 2015 for diving twice.
After the game, Bertuzzi took responsibility for his actions, but didn’t feel the major penalty he received was justified.
“Heat of the moment and I turned and slashed,” Bertuzzi said afterwards. “I don’t think it deserved a five. A two-minute penalty, but not a five. It was more ore less sticking up for myself and not taking stuff from anyone. A young guy in the league, in the heat of the moment, obviously I regret it. But in the end of the day, I don’t think it was a five-minute penalty.”
“It stinks being in the dressing room and watching it and knowing you took the penalty. But just suck it up and eat it and own what you did.”
Red Wings head coach Jeff Blashill lamented the unnecessary penalty that allowed the Islanders back in the game that Detroit had full control of.
“At that point of the game we can’t take a retaliatory penalty,” he said. “It was unnecessary. The game is over. We’ve taken their life away and we gave them life.”
“That’s not acceptable and he knows that,” Blashill continued. “I hear he owned it already. I’ll deal with that privately. He knows it’s not acceptable and our team knows it’s not acceptable.
The Red Wings are likely headed towards a second consecutive year without an appearance in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, something that anyone born after 1990 has never experienced in their lifetimes.