It is very unfortunate when an official is forced to make a call in the playoffs. It is even more unfortunate when that official has to make a decisive call in overtime. That’s what took place in the Stanley Cup Finals on Friday night in Game 4 between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Dallas Stars. After a thrilling contest that saw each team exchange four goals apiece to force the additional period, Kevin Shattenkirk scored on a power play with less than seven minutes left in the first OT to hand the Lightning a 3-1 series lead.
The Stars, while aggrieved at the penalty decision (for tripping), can’t be all that upset, though, as they did let a two-goal first period lead slip out of their fingertips. John Klingberg and Joe Pavelski scored and looked to have them set to even up the series at two games apiece before Brayden Point answered with a goal in both the first and second periods. Corey Perry restored the Stars’ lead before Yanni Gourde tied it up. Alex Killorn then gave the Lightning its first lead of the evening in the third period only to see Pavelski level up matters for Dallas to force OT.