Fraser: Bizarre double high-stick with Seguin, Kreider

Kerry Fraser
5/23/2013 2:57:38 PM
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Hi Kerry,
Aside from all of the missed call in last night's Bruins/Rangers game, the most puzzling one was when two players on opposing teams were struck by high sticks on the same play.
The other night, Tyler Seguin was hit with a high stick and almost at the same time Seguin's stick came up and hit Chris Kreider as well. Both players went to the ice holding their face, yet there was no call on either side.
What is the correct ruling for that? Should each offending player have gotten a high sticking penalty off-setting? Or if one caused the other to occur as he was reacting, is there cause and effect rule? Finally, what I was really curious about; if each player was assessed a penalty for high-sticking, but one player was cut and one wasn't, would there be a power play for the bloodied player?

Thanks, keep your rulings coming!
Tim Rasmusson


That really was a bizarre play; the likes of which I have seen before. The correct ruling on the play should have been a double minor penalty assessed to Steve Eminger of the NY Rangers for cutting/injuring (as reported) the face of Tyler Seguin.  No penalty would result to Seguin for the normal follow through of his shot that cut Chris Kreider.

Injury to both players occurred almost simultaneously as Seguin was in the act of shooting the puck on goal with Chris Kreider fronting the Bruins player for an attempted shot block. Rule 60.1 provides a caveat to the premise that players must be in control of their sticks at all times. The rule specifically states; "However, a player is permitted accidental contact on an opponent if the act is committed as a normal windup or follow through of a shooting motion, or accidental contact on the opposing center who is bent over during the course of a face-off."

The only high-sticking infraction deserving of a penalty on this play was committed by Steve Eminger. It would appear that in the absence of a minor penalty at the very least, this high-sticking incident was undetected by the on-ice Officials.

At least one other missed high-sticking infraction occurred very early in the game when Rangers Captain, Ryan Callahan finished a check on Zdeno Chara and cut the Bruins Captain for stitches between the eyes. When a stick reaches the height of Chara's head there is little doubt it could only be determined a high stick! That is if the Referees or Linesmen detect it?

On this play Chara advanced the puck up-ice from deep in the corner to the left of Tuukka Rask. Ryan Callahan was in a glide path to finish a check on the big defenceman. All eyes of the officiating crew followed the path of the puck exiting the zone and a gap of coverage resulted on the finish of the check. The closest Referee to the play was on the opposite side along the goal line. Since the puck moved beyond the top of the circle and exited the zone he should have remained focused on Callahan and Chara. The linesmen would instinctively focus on the puck as it exited the Bruins zone. The Referee in the neutral zone was now responsible for action on the puck as it entered the neutral zone.

The penalty box attendants in Madison Square Garden were not nearly as busy compared to the medical staff of both teams throughout this wild contest.

The Rangers find themselves with their backs are against the wall. If they are to fight another day Henrik Lundqvist will have to be even better tonight, if such a thing is even humanly possible. One thing is certain; he's going to need some help and a huge effort from every one of his teammates if the Rangers stand a chance. It would also be advisable for them to keep their sticks down—you can't run the risk that a high-stick infraction will be detected.

Kerry Fraser

Kerry Fraser

Kerry Fraser is an analyst for the NHL on TSN and That's Hockey 2Nite on TSN2. As one of the league's most recognizable senior referees, he's worked 1,904 NHL regular season games and 261 playoff games during his 37-year career.

Got a question on rule clarification, comments on rule enforcements or some memorable NHL stories? Kerry wants to answer your emails at!

You can also follow Kerry Fraser on Twitter at @kfraserthecall!

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