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The Late Goal

Have you ever been scored on in the last minute of a period?

Have you ever scored in the last minute of the period?

Game 3 of the 2014 Stanley Cup Finals saw Jeff Carter of the L.A. Kings score with less than 1 second left in the 1st period vs. the New York Rangers.

What may seem like another goal can actually play a much larger role than it seems.


In the NHL (unlike many minor hockey games) the ice is flooded between periods.

This usually takes 15-20 minutes.  This is where that  goal becomes so important.


While the fans are getting out of their seats, grabbing refreshments, stretching their legs, taking a bathroom break the players are in their dressing rooms thinking about the game.

I can guarantee this is how the rooms psyche went.


L. A. Kings room

-Smiles entering the room.

-Lots of chatter, talking about the goal and the successful period

-A feeling of confidence that they can score on the road


NY Rangers room

-Disappointment that they couldn’t close out the period with a tie

-Quiet.  Some talk but not loud.  More subdued.

-A Focus on how they can get a goal back.


Can a team come back from this LATE GOAL.  Absolutely!

Is it easy.  NO!


It’s just one more step they have to take that they might not have had to had they prevented the late goal.

This is why coaches usually put their top lines on the ice to start and finish periods.


Hockey is a mental game.  At any age.

Whether you believe you CAN or you believe you CANT.  You’re probably right.



Click below for the link to game 3 recap.