Sunday, January 9, 2011

"Unanswered" Goals

Following Russia's shocking comeback after being down 3-0 to Canada after two periods in the gold medal game of the 2011 World Junior Tournament, many described the Russians as having scored "five unanswered goals".

Unanswered goals webpage

No, they did not!

Canada was already leading by 3. Therefore, the first 3 goals scored by the Russians were the "answers" to the 3 goals Canada had already scored.

Once the Russians "answered" Canada's 3 goals, the Russians proceeded to score 2 "unanswered" goals that Canada needed to, and were unable to, answer.

Yes, the Russians scored five consecutive goals, but only two of their goals were unanswered goals.

"Unanswered goals" indicates the margin that a team leads by that the other team needs to answer, while the proper "consecutive goals" should be used to indicate the scoring streak a team is on, rather than the overused, lazy, cliched, misused and all too frequently incorrect "unanswered goals".

Please radio, TV and print media (both printed and online), use "consecutive" from now on to describe a scoring streak during a game.


  1. Ah, but they were just trying to sound scandalous, you know?

  2. Regardless of how they were trying to sound, they were wrong! Everyone likes to use "unanswered", but no one stops to think what it means and it drives us nuts.

  3. But Canada did not answer to Russia's goals.... hence, unanswered.

  4. That's the point we're trying to make. Russia answered Canada's three goals, but Canada did not answer Russia's last two goals, hence two unanswered goals, not five.


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