“We’re making sure the octopus wasn’t part of the play.”
On a typical day in the National Hockey League, that Logan Couture quote about an octopus being thrown on the ice in the middle of play — right before Couture and the San Jose Sharks scored to beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 in overtime — would’ve been the most surreal thing about the night.
"We're making sure the octopus wasn't part of the play." pic.twitter.com/tTjKy8i9Cv
— Sheng Peng (@Sheng_Peng) January 12, 2022
Not so tonight, of course, because of this Kodak Black moment at a Florida Panthers contest:
Regardless, it was plenty strange to see an octopus tossed out at center ice, right after a Red Wings offensive faceoff win, 35 seconds into OT.
“It was weird because the crowd was screaming and yelling and I didn’t know what was going on,” Couture recounted. “I looked up, I thought there was a jersey on the ice. I got closer and saw it was an octopus. I kind of skated around it.”
Jonathan Dahlen (76) was the hero in the shadows on this goal, stealing the puck from Lucas Raymond (23) off the draw, keeping it onside with his foot off the Brent Burns (88) stretch pass, then seaming it to Burns before the Couture (39) putback.
But back to the lecture at hand: The eight-legged octopus, representing the eight wins needed to win the Stanley Cup in the Original Six era, has been thrown by Red Wings fans onto the ice since 1952.
“That’s something you don’t see every day,” Timo Meier offered, before quipping, “That’s kind of their tradition. I guess it brought us luck because we scored.”
According to the San Jose Sharks captain, however, it could’ve gone the other way. After his goal, there was an extensive review of it. The ESPN+ broadcast thought that it might be goalie interference. It turned out to be an offsides review. But it was also the octopus.
“I didn’t know what they were challenging at first. The refs said they were looking at the octopus possibly in the middle of the play and if it got in anyone’s way then they would have disallowed [the goal],” Couture said. “Then they said it was checking for offside.”
So get this: A Red Wings fan throws an octopus on the ice. The cephalopod deters a Wing from getting back defensively on the San Jose Sharks’ goal. And the Sharks’ goal might’ve been disallowed?
That might have been fitting, on just another normal night in the NHL.
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