Thursday, June 26, 2008

"Nystrom was offsides!"

Contrary to the majority of my posts here, the purpose of this post isn't because it's commonly brought up in SoSH, although it was brought up in P&G last week. For those unfamiliar with SoSH, it's a Red Sox forum site and P&G is a separate miscellaneous section of the site. The purpose of this post is for whenever I talk to Philadelphia Flyers fans who get mixed up about plays from Game 6 of the 1980 Stanley Cup Finals between the Flyers and Islanders.

As an Islanders fan who has lived in the Philly area since '92, plus a couple of years in college before then, I'd be quite rich if I had a dollar for every time a Flyers fan was mixed up and thought that Bobby Nystrom was offsides when he had scored the overtime goal that won the first Stanley Cup ever for the NY Islanders. The Islanders did score an offsides goal during that game, but it wasn't the OT goal. For those who don't believe me, you can take a look for yourself.



At 1:33-1:36 if you keep hitting the play/pause button, you'll see at 1:35 that Tonelli had the puck in the zone before Nystrom was in the zone.

Now look at this clip.



The offsides goal was late in the 1st period, 33 seconds into this clip. It gave the Islanders a 2-1 lead. Leon Stickle, the official who blew the call, will forever live in infamy among Flyers fans, whether or not they remember on which goal he made his blunder.

As much as Flyers fans might say the Flyers would have won this game had Stickle called the offsides, we'll never know. Nystrom was interviewed about the game on Classic Sports Network (now ESPN Classic). He said when the Isles had a 4-2 lead after the 2nd period, they were in the locker room congratulating themselves that they were about to win the Stanley Cup. I highly doubt they would have done that with only a 3-2 lead.

10 comments:

Mike said...

You should blog more.

Anonymous said...

All I remember was that God forsaken confetti! UGH! I cried like a biotch!

Anonymous said...

The offsides goal in question wasn't this one (that was clearly on sides.) It was either a gold by or it was assisted by Duane (Brent?) Sutter. I remember the photo from an issue of SI. I am trying to find it somewhere on the web - no luck.

If I find it, I'll let you know.

Anonymous said...

Here ya go:

May 24, 1980 -- In Game 6, Bobby Nystrom's OT goal at the 7:11 mark gave the Islanders their first Cup, 5-4. The Flyers entered the third period down 4-2 but Bob Dailey and John Paddock scored third period goals. A damaging no call by linesman Leon Stickle on an obvious offside cost the Flyers. After tthe game, Stickle was quoted as saying "I guess I blew it. Maybe I was too close to the play," The Islanders added two more PPGs giving them 16 in the 6-game series. It was the last hockey game broadcast (national) on American TV in almost 10 years.

See the offsides non-call here. It was Gillies to Goring to Sutter.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TFjMIWkXHSM

sfip said...

That's the same clip I showed 2nd on my blog post.

Anonymous said...

Flyer fans gripe too much over this. They are just not willing to accept the fact that the Islanders were the better team and that Stickle's mistake had no effect on things. They also won't even think about the fact that even if the Flyers had won Game 6, they still would have lost Game 7 at home. The Islanders proved to be a tough road team and one that could come through in pressure situations throughout the '80 playoffs. The Isles were just the kind of visiting team that would have won a Game 7 at the Spectrum had there been one.

Also, the notion of Nystrom's goal beiong offsides is just another silly, lame Philly excuse. The goal was clearly onsides!

strawman504 said...

One bad goal can cost even the best teams a series. Just ask the Oilers after Smith put one into his own net back in the 80's. That offside goal cost the Flyers the game and probably a cup. Any Islander will tell you they did not want to go back to Philly. And there also was a brutal penalty call in overtime in one of the earlier games in the series. Flyers are finally escaping their reputation now some 30 years later.

sfip said...

Strawman, like I said in the last paragraph we'll never know if the Flyers would have won Game 6 had Stickle gotten the call right. It's very possible they still wouldn't have. It's not a foregone conclusion, let alone the "probably" for Game 7.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget game one. The Islanders had the first power play in Stanley Cup finals OT history on a terrible call.

Anonymous said...

i remeber this series very well. the islanders were not the better team. they were a ggod team that got a lot of breaks from officials. the potvin goal had to be one of the worst non calls in nhl history. the next being danny brieir's goal for the flyers in game one in the 2012 playoffs. he was ofside by at least 3 inches. and i'm a die hard flyers fan. the non call i think that cost the flyers more than anything e=was the goal the islanders scored in game one where peeters had the puck under control in his glove after a save. in most cases the refs blow the whistle immediately and if a player knocks the puck loose it is already dead. but this time the ref allowed an islander to whack 2 or three times at peeters glove and never blew the whistle. don't remember the islander player. but it cost theflyers game one and gave the islanders home ice advantage. had the flyers been given the normal calls in this series they probably would have won the cup. the islanders would have been down 2 games to none going home. i think at this point the flyers would have one one in the island. i'm sure a lot of islander fans will disagree but the flyers were clearly the best team in that season. also dennis potvin and mike bossy were the 2 biggest protected players along with gretzky till mario and crybaby sid crosby.