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NHL investigating clock operation on last-second Kings goal

February 2, 2012 | 10:40 am

Drew

NHL spokesman Gary Meagher said Thursday morning the league is reviewing events surrounding the apparent clock stoppage at Staples Center on Wednesday night that led to a goal by Kings defenseman Drew Doughty being allowed with four-tenths of a second left in the third period.

Meagher said the review actually began at 2 a.m. Eastern time, shortly after the game was declared over with the Kings earning a 3-2 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets. Colin Campbell, the NHL's senior executive vice president of hockey operations, told the Canadian Press news agency that league officials watched the replay later and noticed the discrepancy.

The goal was reviewed by NHL executives at the league’s situation room in Toronto and was allowed to stand. But  Columbus General Manager Scott Howson said his coaching staff saw on video replays soon afterward that the clock appeared to stop with 1.8 seconds left and then resumed. Doughty’s goal, he said, should not have counted because it occurred after the clock would have expired had it not stopped.

The clock is controlled by an off-ice official who is employed by the NHL, Meagher said. That’s the game timekeeper.

Meagher said the league is looking into many aspects surrounding the call, including why the apparent problem with the clock wasn’t noticed in the building or by NHL executives who were monitoring the game at the league’s situation room in Toronto.

-- Helene Elliott

Photo: Kings defenseman Drew Doughty, center, celebrates with right wing Justin Williams, left, and defenseman Jack Johnson after scoring the game-winning goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press.

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