The Chicago Blackhawks pleaded ignorance Thursday about the possibility that right wing Andrew Shaw bit Tampa Bay defenseman Victor Hedman in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.

"I have no idea," Blackhawks center Antoine Vermette said one day after Chicago won the series opener 2-1 over the Lightning on Wednesday night in Tampa, Fla. "I read about that. There was a little question about that. I didn't see it. I don't know about it."

Shaw and Hedman got tangled up late in the first period behind the Tampa Bay net after Hedman pushed Blackhawks star Patrick Kane into the boards just after play had been stopped on an officials' whistle. After the scrum was broken up, Hedman was seen on the Lightning bench lifting his jersey to show a spot on his side to a team trainer.

Hedman said after the game that it felt like he was bit, but couldn't say for sure that it did happen.

Neither Shaw nor Hedman was made available for Thursday's off-day interview session.

The NHL looked at video of the scrum but hasn't released any additional information about possible discipline.

The Stanley Cup Final has been bitten by controversy before: Boston's Patrice Bergeron accused Vancouver's Alex Burrows of biting his finger during a scrum in Game 1 of the 2011 series. Burrows wasn't suspended when the NHL couldn't find conclusive evidence of a bite.

A year earlier in 2010, Philadelphia's Daniel Carcillo accused Boston's Marc Savard of biting his finger. Carcillo now plays for Chicago.

Game 2 is Saturday night.

Talk of coaching challenges

The joint NHL/NHL Players' Association competition committee said Thursday that it recommended coaches' challenges for goals involving goalie interference and offside plays.

If approved by the NHLPA executive committee and board of governors, goalie interference challenges would be handled by referees at ice level and offside plays by the situation room in Toronto.

The competition committee reached no consensus on overtime changes for next season and will continue discussions. General managers voted in March to consider 3-on-3 overtime either for a full five minutes or the format used by the American Hockey League — three minutes of 4-on-4 and then four minutes of 3-on-3.

Also recommended is a change to faceoff rules in the defensive zone that makes the defensive player put his stick down first, rather than the visiting player. For faceoffs at center ice, the rule will remain the same, requiring that the visiting player put his stick down first.


• Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final averaged 5,547,000 viewers and drew a 3.34 rating on NBC. That made it the most-watched Game 1 that did not require overtime in 18 years and NBC's second-most-watched Game 1 ever, the network said.

• CCM Hockey announced that Connor McDavid, the NHL's top prospect, has agreed to exclusively use the company's equipment and also play a key role in marketing campaigns. The announcement was made in Buffalo, where McDavid is among 120 prospects taking part in the league's weeklong pre-draft scouting combine.

• Washington Capitals center Eric Fehr had elbow surgery and could be ready for the start of the next season. Fehr had 19 goals and 14 assists in 75 games this past season. He missed 10 of the team's 14 playoff games.