Apart from being one of the best players in hockey, Cale Makar also seems like a good person.
Sportsmanship is one of the first things a child is taught when they start playing sports. Winning is important, but maintaining the integrity of the game should always come first. It seems like we sometimes lose sight of this idea in the heat of competition, which is why it’s so refreshing to see these principles prevailing at the highest level.
During Monday night’s game against the New York Islanders, Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar slipped while skating around his net, resulting in a tripping penalty against the chasing Mathew Barzal.
Instant referee Brandon Blandina whistled and Makar realized what had happened, he waved his hand to speak with the official. Blandina then announced that there would be no penalty, much to the chagrin of the Colorado crowd.
“I don’t think he had a good angle on it, he just saw me go down,” Makar said after the Avalanche’s 1-0 shootout victory. “I’d like to think that most of the times I fall it’s usually because someone tripped me. This one, I just lost an advantage.
Although he apparently did the right thing in asking for the sanction to be lifted, the 24-year-old wasn’t so sure about his decision after it came into effect.
“I felt a lot more guilty for doing that than probably if I hadn’t said anything,” Makar said. “I don’t know if it’s something I will do again.”
Makar openly expressed his disappointment with the way games were officiated during the season and joked about saving Blandina “from media attention”. Makar found himself in a difficult and hopeless situation after this call. Either he would benefit from an obvious error by the official, or he would let his team down by depriving them of a numerical advantage in a draw.
“It kind of shows you who Cale is,” Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar said. “Typical wedge.”
While he appreciated the honesty, Barzal isn’t sure he would have been so open.
“Obviously good sportsmanship on his part,” he told reporters after the game. “I don’t know if I would have done the same, to be honest with you.”
What Makar has also done in this situation is to be an exemplary role model for every amateur athlete in any sport. If a two-time NHL star, Norris and Conn Smythe trophy winner and Stanley Cup champion can make the right call, then you have no reason not to.
More from Yahoo Sports
#Avalanches #Cale #Makar #feels #guilty #denying #penalty