Cale Makar wasn’t thrilled about suspension as Avs head back to Seattle

Apr 27, 2023, 3:45 PM

Cale Makar...

(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

The Avalanche are on the brink of elimination in their Round 1 series against the Kraken.

That’s after they lost Game 5 at Ball Arena, 3-2, and now trail in the series by that same margin.

Part of the reason for the defeat on Wednesday night was the absence of superstar defenseman Cale Makar. He missed the game due to a suspension, after a hit on Kraken forward Jared McCann in Game 4 was deemed late and unnecessary by the NHL.

The problem is, Makar didn’t know where the puck was when he hit McCann and a whistle was never blown. How can the league penalize a guy for playing hard when he still thinks the action is going on? Take a look for yourself and listen closely.

Again, Makar didn’t know the puck was out of the rink, and played to the whistle. That’s something taught on all levels of sports — keep going hard until you hear the referee signal the action is paused.

Regardless, Makar was the latest victim of a strange ruling by the NHL Department of Player Safety. And on Thursday before the Avalanche flew back to Seattle, he commented on the suspension for the first time. It’s safe to say he wasn’t thrilled.

Makar’s right about the refs and the league moving the goalposts on that play. First there was no penalty assessed, then a major, then after video review a minor. How can the NHL reduce the penalty on the ice to a simple minor and then say it’s worthy of a suspension?

It doesn’t make sense, and Makar is clearly ticked off. After Nathan MacKinnon was also the victim of poor refereeing in Game 5, he got mad as well.

The Avs desperately need a win on Friday night. It’s the only way their season stays alive. And an angry Makar and MacKinnon might be their best shot to get it done and force a Game 7.



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