The Colorado Avalanche won a Stanley Cup last summer so this regular season doesn't feel like a life-or-death proposition. Still, every point counts and a competitive advantage is a competitive advantage so it was extremely unusual to see standout defenseman Cale Makar convince officials to waive off a hooking penalty against the New York Islanders last night that would have put his team on the power play.
Someone has seen that annoying sportsmanship commercial a few too many times.
Before we start fitting this guy for a Presidential Medal of Freedom, know that it sounds like he regrets it. And would regret it more if his team hadn't won in a shootout.
“I felt a lot more guilty about doing that than probably if I would have said nothing,” Makar said. “I don’t know if it’s something I’ll do again. I kind of saved the refs there. You can’t go parallel on a guy’s body around the net like that, but at the same time, he didn’t get my feet at all. I just tripped.
“That was one of the toughest things I’ve ever done. I don’t think it’ll happen again. It would’ve been unfortunate if we didn’t get the extra point in this game.”
Makar said he apologized to teammates afterward. As guilty as he would have felt for getting away with an incorrect call, he says he would have felt guiltier if the Avalanche (17-11-2) had lost without a goal after Makar robbed his team of a competitive advantage.
The unusual chain of events were not entirely unprecedented because hockey players are the salt of the Earth. Just last April, Alex Ovechkin said he didn't need no stinking penalty against the Vegas Golden Knights.
Is declining a power play the ultimate power play? Strong argument to be made there.