Skip to content

Bennett's goal upheld after goalie interference review

Steve Babineau / National Hockey League / Getty

The most hated man in Boston evened up Game 4 for the Florida Panthers in controversial fashion.

Sam Bennett scored early in the third period amid contact in the crease, and the tally was upheld after it was reviewed for goaltender interference. Bennett appeared to push Bruins forward Charlie Coyle into netminder Jeremy Swayman on the play.

"Video review supported the referees' call on the ice that the shove by Florida's Sam Bennett on Charlie Coyle and the subsequent contact with Jeremy Swayman did not prevent Swayman from playing his position in the crease prior to Bennett's goal," the NHL explained shortly thereafter.

Rule 69.1 of the league's rulebook states: "If a defending player has been pushed, shoved, or fouled by an attacking player so as to cause the defending player to come into contact with his own goalkeeper, such contact shall be deemed contact initiated by the attacking player for purposes of this rule, and if necessary a penalty assessed to the attacking player and if a goal is scored it would be disallowed."

Bennett downplayed his actions postgame and insisted they wouldn't have made a difference.

"On that one, it was a little shove, and I'm putting the puck in the net before Swayman's going to have an opportunity (to make a save)," Bennett told TNT. "Whether Coyle's in his grill or not, I believe I'm putting that puck in before (Swayman is) getting across, no matter what. So I think that's why it stood, and I think it was the right call."

Swayman had a different opinion about the play.

"In the moment, I didn't know what exactly happened, I just know I couldn't play my position, and the review showed that," the Bruins goalie told the media, including NESN.

Aleksander Barkov netted the eventual winner for the Panthers less than four minutes after Bennett's goal. Florida took a 3-1 series lead with the victory to put the Bruins on the brink of elimination.

Bennett hit Boston captain Brad Marchand in Game 3. Marchand left that contest and didn't return. He was deemed day-to-day and then ruled out for Game 4 with what his club called an upper-body injury.

The Panthers forward didn't receive supplementary discipline for that incident.

Game 5 is scheduled for Tuesday night in Sunrise.

Daily Newsletter

Get the latest trending sports news daily in your inbox