Jon Cooper is heartbroken

TAMPA | Win or lose, Jon Cooper is usually in high spirits when it comes to speaking to the media. On Wednesday evening, however, the Lightning head coach was succinct.

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In a number of detours so as not to convey the substance of his thoughts too clumsily, the trained lawyer seemed to have pulled the plug and given up this final, which his team could lose in Colorado on Friday evening.

Then he ended up spilling the beans.

“This setback will hurt more than the others. I find it difficult to speak. I’ll do it tomorrow (Thursday)… You’ll understand what I mean when you see the winning goal again. I’m heartbroken for the players because we should still be playing this game,” he said.

Reviewing the sequence, we understood what Cooper was referring to. The Lightning head coach appears to be claiming that six Avalanche players (plus the goaltender) were on the field when Nazem Kadri picked up the puck.

The game report originally released by the NHL featured the numbers of seven players on the line that corresponded to Kadri’s goal: Bowen Byram, Jack Johnson, Valeri Nichushkin, Darcy Kuemper, Josh Manson, Artturi Lehkonen and Kadri.

Jon Cooper is heartbroken

Apparently another version was released later. Which doesn’t dispel Cooper’s doubts.

Hours after the game, the NHL sent out a statement explaining the series.

“At the end of the game, as is the case after every game, Hockey Operations met with the four officials. Regarding the series that led to the winning goal, each of the four officials stated that they hadn’t seen a situation that deserved to be called a penalty because there were too many players on the ice, we can read. This type of footage is not subject to review by Hockey Operations or On-Ice officials. »

Cooper may complain about the situation, but he can’t change it. His team is on the verge of being eliminated on Friday evening.

Kuemper introduces the sequence

Even if it didn’t always seem easy and Victor Hedman gave a gift, Kümper, who was taken from the third game by his coach, reacted well. He blocked 37 shots.

“We spoke yesterday (Tuesday). Jared (Bednar) wanted to make sure I was back in goal. He wanted me to stay calm and play my game. I know the guys supported me. I wanted to play at my best. »

In addition to stopping pucks, Kümper started the winning streak.

“We’ve been in their zone for a while. Their players looked exhausted so I wanted to return the puck as soon as possible. Luckily we were able to initiate an advance. Lehky (Artturi Lehkonen) passed the puck to Naz (Nazem Kadri) who made the game brilliant. »

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