For the second straight game, the Avalanche saw a replay review go against them as Simon Gagne's disputed goal with eight seconds left in regulation gave the Philadelphia Flyers a 3-3 tie against Colorado on Wednesday night.
"Maybe we should put it on the JumboTron and have the fans vote," Avalanche coach Bob Hartley said. "It makes you wonder, but I guess it's a game of mistakes."
Gagne's goal came as he lifted his stick to deflect a centering pass from Daymond Langkow. The puck bounced off his left glove and squirted between Patrick Roy's legs, prompting Roy to charge out of the crease in protest.
After quick review, the referees allowed the goal to stand and then confirmed the decision after a second, longer review. The NHL rulebook states that a goal can be scored off a player's hand as long as there is no deliberate forward motion.
Said Gagne: "It just hit my thumb. My hand never left my stick, so I think it was a good goal. It was a pretty lucky goal, but that's a goal."
Roy and the Avalanche had a different interpretation.
"He turned his hand to put it in the right direction. He also made a forward motion," Roy said. "It is toug not to win. It is just the person upstairs didn't make the right call. That's all."
The Avalanche, who had a goal wrongly disallowed by the same officiating crew two days ago, were forced to settle for their second straight disputed tie. They gave up a goal in the final three minutes against Tampa Bay on Monday.
"I am sure they wanted to make the right call," Colorado captain Joe Sakic said. "On Monday it was pretty obvious that someone in charge upstairs didn't know what he was doing."
After Gagne's goal, Philadelphia had a power play for the final 1:14 of overtime, but could not capitalize against Roy, who finished with 28 saves. It still left the Flyers satisfied after arriving in Denver at about 3 a.m. because of a flight delay out of Nashville on Tuesday.
"I couldn't be any happier and I expressed that to them," said coach Bill Barber, 1-0-2 since taking over for Craig Ramsay, who was fired on Sunday. "I think it's important that they know. It's very enjoyable to coach and watch a team play that hard."
Milan Hejduk gave Colorado a 3-2 lead midway through the third when he scored on his own rebound. Defensemen Greg de Vries and Eric Messier added unlikely goals to help the Avalanche extend their home unbeaten streak to 11 games (8-0-3).
Philadelphia, seeking its first road victory over Colorado since October 1993, led briefly in the third period after Williams beat Roy on a slap shot from the right circle.
The advantage lasted only 26 seconds as the Avalanche tied it at 2 on Messier's backhand shot that slipped past Philadelphia goalie Brian Boucher. It was Messier's second goal of the season and his first since Nov. 9.
A four-minute high-sticking penalty on Flyers captain Kevin Stevens at 10:37 set up Hejduk's go-ahead goal as the Avalanche capitalized just 65 seconds later.
Colorado has the NHL's third-best power play, while the Flyers rank last in the league in killing penalties. The Avalanche finished 1-for-5 with the man-advantage.
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