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Fraser: Can a goal be awarded when the net is knocked off?

Kerry Fraser
3/28/2014 11:41:07 AM
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Got a question on rule clarification, comments on rule enforcements or some memorable NHL stories? Kerry wants to answer your emails at cmonref@tsn.ca.

Hi Kerry,

Thursday night's Bruins-Blackhawks game had a goal by Patrice Bergeron initially waved off by the referee, but video review clarified it was a good goal. The situation had Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford scramble behind the net, lose the puck to Brad Marchand, who quickly threw it out to Bergeron who one-timed a shot at the net, and in. During this time, Crawford pushed the back of the net up as the puck crossed the goal line, between the posts.
 
I understand the ruling was that it is a goal as the net didn't come off its post moorings.
 
The question I have, is what if Crawford completely knocked the net off, on his own, as the puck went through?
 
According to the video ruling, they indicated "because the posts remained in place, it was a goal." If the posts didn't remain in place, and the puck went in, wasn't there a rule in place that allows the goal, if the defending team knocks the net off on their own? I know this is also a delay of game penalty but, in a shooting situation, would this have counted, if Crawford knocked the net off just before the puck went in?

Thanks,

Louie Melissis from Whitby
 
Hi Louie,

Once the referee on the goal line waved off an apparent goal scored on a Patrice Bergeron shot that entered the net from the front position and immediately exited under where Corey Crawford had tipped the goal frame forward, the other on-ice officials quickly gathered to share their perspective on the play. During this conference it was determined (and convinced the ref that initially waved it off) that a good goal had resulted and the initial call on the ice was reversed. Video review was then initiated and it was confirmed that the puck did cross the goal line and that the goal frame was considered in its proper position as spelled out in Rule 78.4. (The goal frame shall be considered in its proper position when at least a portion of the flexible peg(s) are still inside both the goal post and the hole in the ice.) 

Under Rule 38.4 (Situations Subject to Video Review), the video goal judge (Situation Room) is allowed to rule that the puck crossed the goal line and did so prior to the goal frame being dislodged under subsections (i) and (ii). If however, Crawford had knocked the net completely off the moorings prior to the puck crossing the goal line, the video goal judge could only advise the referee that the net was off the mooring prior to the puck crossing the goal line. The resulting verdict through the review process could only be "no goal".

Louie, situations subject to video review aside, the referee can award a goal under Rule 63.6 when he determines that the goal post is displaced, either deliberately or accidentally, by a defending player, prior to the puck crossing the goal line between the "normal" position of the goalposts. We saw Cam Atkinson of the Columbus Blue Jackets awarded a goal under this rule in their big win over the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night.
 
For a goal to be awarded, the goal post must have been displaced by the actions of a defending player, the puck must have been shot (or the player must be in the act of shooting) at the goal prior to the goalpost being displaced, and it must be determined that the puck would have entered the net between the normal position of the goal posts.

On this play, if Crawford had knocked the net completely off its moorings (accidentally or otherwise), it would have required a similar conference by the officials to award a goal since the ref closest to the net did not think that the puck had crossed the line between the goal posts! Video review would not be able to assist them in making this call since it is not reviewable and therefore must be determined by the referee(s) on the ice. I am quite sure the same verdict would have eventually been rendered on the ice and a goal would have been awarded to Bergeron.

Boston is really bringing their "A" game at the absolute perfect time of the season. The Caps and Flyers draw the Bruins this weekend in afternoon games. Huge points for playoff standings are on the line this weekend with several meaningful 4-point games; Leafs, Flyers, Blue Jackets, Caps, Wings, Minnesota, Phoenix, Dallas, Vancouver just to name a few! 
 
Have a great weekend everyone and enjoy the exciting playoff race.

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 cmonref@tsn.ca!


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

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