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Edmonton Oilers’ Cam Talbot calls goaltender interference rule ‘f**king ridiculous’

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The netminder did not hold back after the Oilers lost yet another goal to the rule.

NHL: Edmonton Oilers at Arizona Coyotes Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

NHL players have had enough of the controversial — and inconsistent — goaltender interference rule, if Cam Talbot’s outburst on Saturday is any indication. The Edmonton Oilers found themselves on the wrong side of a goaltender interference call, again, in a 1-0 loss to the Arizona Coyotes.

Down late in the third period, Patrick Maroon appeared to have tied the game for Edmonton. The Coyotes, however, used their coach’s challenge to reverse the ruling, keeping the Oilers off the scoreboard due to goaltender interference.

The officials determined after review that Maroon interfered with goaltender Antti Raanta’s ability to make the save. According to the NHL, “Maroon interfered with Raanta before the puck crossed the goal line,” so the call was reversed.

After the game, reporters asked Talbot for his thoughts on the challenge, and the goaltender did not pull any punches about his feelings for the league’s goaltender interference rule.

The Oilers uploaded the beginning of the exchange but conveniently left out most of the profanities Talbot dropped to describe his displeasure with the rule.

Talbot made 31 saves in Saturday’s loss for the Oilers as the team continues to spiral downwards. This season, the Oilers have a 23-30-4 record and sit 19 points out of a playoff spot after making it to the second round of the postseason in 2016-17.

The Oilers have been burned by goaltender interference calls before, as captain Connor McDavid was flagged for interference in overtime on a play that looked legal by all standards. Maroon’s call was a bit more gray than McDavid’s, but that is very much the reason Talbot has voiced his complaints. The NHL’s goaltender interference rule has been a thorn in the league’s side all season, as the league seemingly has no idea how to call this rule on a consistent basis every night.

NHL players have spoken up about their dislike of the rule’s inconsistency from game to game. The Winnipeg Jets were rightfully furious when Vegas was allowed to keep a goal despite James Neal breaking his stick over Connor Hellebuyck’s head right before the goal. St. Louis general manager Doug Armstrong was unable to complain about a controversial Bruins goal because he “doesn’t know what the rules are,” marking just how clueless the entire league is on how the rule should be called.

However, Talbot’s objection and frustration about the ruling is the strongest bit of wording we’ve gotten so far about how players and coaches feel on this topic. It remains to be seen if the NHL will take action with Talbot’s choice of words to reporters, but the netminder has spoken his mind, and there are likely many out there that agree with him.