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Crazy NHL playoff game could have impact on college hockey

San Jose Sharks right wing Barclay Goodrow (23) celebrates with defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic (44) and center Joe Thornton (19) after defeating the Vegas Golden Knights during overtime in game seven of the first round of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs Tuesday, April 23, at SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. Stan Szeto / USA TODAY Sports

GRAND FORKS -- Last summer, college hockey approved a new rule that allows officials to use video review on potential major penalty calls during the regular season.

The theory behind it was simple: Nobody likes more video reviews that slow down the game, but major penalty calls are so critical -- it hands a team a five-minute power play that doesn’t expire and it usually involves an ejection -- that it’s more important to get the call is right than it is to speed up the game.

This season, there has been some pushback on that.

Some have questioned whether there are too many video reviews and that it’s the wrong direction for the game.

But what happened Tuesday night, April 23, in Game 7 of the San Jose Sharks and Vegas Golden Knights NHL playoff series likely solidifies college hockey’s position -- and may lead to the NHL adopting a similar rule.

With Vegas holding a 3-0 lead in the third period, Golden Knights forward Cody Eakin was called for a five-minute major penalty for cross-checking Joe Pavelski, who was injured on the play. It was the wrong call, but NHL officials don’t have the ability to double check.

The Sharks ended up scoring four times on the ensuing power play and taking the lead. They eventually won the game in overtime.

Prior to last season, college hockey officials could use video review for potential majors during the playoffs, but that was expanded nine months ago.

Even if no penalty is called on the ice, officials can go back and use review to call a five-minute major. However, if no penalty is called on the ice, they cannot use review to call a two-minute minor.

If a two-minute minor is called on the ice, officials can change it to a five-minute major on video review, but cannot rescind the minor call.

The NHL controversy happened just days before college hockey coaches and administrators are scheduled to meet in Florida for their annual convention.

Although this is not a rules change year -- NCAA allows rules changes every other year -- the Sharks-Golden Knights game will certainly have some re-thinking whether they should eliminate video review for majors next summer.

Dell’s Sharks pull off epic comeback

Aaron Dell’s pursuit of a Stanley Cup remains alive after the wild comeback Tuesday night in Game 7.

While pundits debated where San Jose’s rally ranked among the best all-time in the NHL playoffs, Dell also was a part of one of the University of North Dakota’s greatest playoff comebacks of all time.

In the 2012 Western Collegiate Hockey Association Final Five semifinals, UND trailed Minnesota 3-0 late in the second period and was getting outshot badly, when it flipped the script and scored six straight to win 6-3. UND won the championship game against Denver the next day.

Dell saw action in two of the seven games between the Sharks and Vegas Golden Knights, coming in relief of Martin Jones both times.

NCHC reloading with top recruits

All-USHL teams were announced Tuesday and they’re more evidence that the NCHC is getting deeper.

Four of the five college-bound players on the all-USHL first team will be in the NCHC next season -- and none of them are going to the teams that finished 1-2 in the league last season, St. Cloud State and Minnesota Duluth.

Forward Bobby Brink (Denver), forward Brett Murray (Miami), defenseman Ronnie Attard (Western Michigan) and goalie Isaiah Saville (Omaha) are on the first team. Western Michigan-bound goalie Brandon Bussi is on the third team, while Pinto (UND) and Saville are on the all-rookie first team.

The NCHC has won four consecutive NCAA national championships -- UND in 2016, Denver in 2017 and Minnesota Duluth in 2018 and 2019.

Beer in Mariucci?

When UND takes on Minnesota in Mariucci this season, could fans be drinking beers in their seats for the first time?

University President Eric Kaler is asking the Board of Regents to allow it.

Previously, alcohol was only allowed in the suites at Mariucci.

TRF’s Myers commits to BSU

Forward Aaron Myers of Thief River Falls, Minn., committed to Bemidji State late last week.

Myers had 50 points in 57 regular-season games for the Minnesota Wilderness in the North American Hockey League this season. He was the leading scorer for the Prowlers a year ago as a senior.

Myers is the son of former UND player Rick Myers.