The NHL’s officiating has taken plenty of criticism these playoffs, and a play during the third period of the Nashville Predators-St. Louis Blues game will give those critics even more ammunition. After a faceoff following a Nashville goal, Joel Edmundson of the Blues hit P.K. Subban of the Predators in the head after Subban made a pass, so late that the NBCSN cameras didn’t even catch it initially. This led to Edmundson being called for roughing, but Subban bizarrely also being called for “embellishment,” leading to a four-on-four situation rather than the Nashville power play that should have resulted. It was a decision that was strongly called out by the NBCSN broadcast team of John Forslund and Brian Boucher. Here’s NBCSN’s first look at it:
Here’s their immediate follow-up, showing another replay:
Here’s Predators’ head coach Peter Laviolette getting upset when he’s told Subban’s going off too, and the broadcasters criticizing the call:
Forslund and Boucher went on to offer more criticism of it a little later:
And here’s a look at it from behind:
PK Subban got called for embellishment here pic.twitter.com/Bivugiizco
— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) May 3, 2017
This was an unbelievable call, and the broadcasters’ condemnation of it helps to show that. It’s also one that was roundly roasted by fans and media on Twitter:
Sequence of events:
– Subban kneed in the face
– Subban nailed with stick to bare skull
– Subban booked for embellishment
– Rob is angry
— Rob Pizzola (@robpizzola) May 3, 2017
Subban embellished being stood up, and bowled over by a high hit.
I just embellished pretending to understand that call.
— John Wawrow (@john_wawrow) May 3, 2017
Props to Subban for embellishing his way to the locker room? True commitment I guess.
— Meesh (@HockeyMeesh) May 3, 2017
Embellishment??? Well I guess Subban shouldn't make his head so desirable to hit??
— Jen Neale (@MsJenNeale_PD) May 3, 2017
P.K. Subban had his head taken off and got called for embellishment. That only happens to P.K. Subban.
— Аrpon Basu (@ArponBasu) May 3, 2017
It even led to jokes about the bizarre accusations of the Washington Capitals’ closed-door meeting “conspiracy” to hurt Sidney Crosby:
Can't help but think the Caps' closed-door meeting after game two involved a discussion on how to get PK Subban called for embellishment
— Winging It In Motown (@wingingitmotown) May 3, 2017
That’s as good an explanation as any for how Subban got called for a penalty here. He would later leave the game to have his head injury evaluated. The Predators won 2-1 in the end, giving them a 3-1 series lead, but they’ll now have to see what Subban’s status is. And if he is able to go in Game Five Friday, hopefully he won’t get called again for getting hit in the head.