SANDY — It was the hot topic in MLS last Saturday night — did Real Salt Lake's Corey Baird dive to earn the penalty kick against the Vancouver Whitecaps or was there contact?
The immediate reaction on social media after replays was that Baird started to fall before contact was made by Vancouver defender Jake Nerwinski. Even RSL nemesis Benny Feilhaber — who is now with Colorado — chimed in on Twitter saying there was no contact before Baird went down.
Deseret News photographer Steve Griffin was in perfect position to capture the sequence, which is shown here in 23 photos. It shows a different angle than video replays showed.
The photos show there was no contact on Nerwinski's initial lunge toward Baird, with the contact coming after on Baird's trail leg.
Even after referee Drew Fischer called the PK, many figured it would be reviewed by VAR. Despite what seemed like a borderline call though, the official in the VAR booth didn't think it warranted a second look from Fischer as the foul stood.
Albert Rusnak stepped up and buried the penalty kick, the game's lone score in RSL's 1-0 win.