Got a question on rule clarification, comments on rule enforcements or some memorable NHL stories? Kerry Fraser wants to answer your emails at firstname.lastname@example.org!
I was watching the Montreal vs. Washington game and the second goal had me a bit confused. The shot was taken by Hillen and it was tipped, from my judgement, by Chimera's high stick in front. The puck then went off of Markov's stick and into the net. Now the goal was given to Fehr and he did not even touch the puck at any point in the play. I guess they gave it to him because they must have thought it went off his stick and not Markov's. They, also, did not give any point to Chimera which would mean they thought the puck was never contacted by a high stick. Fair enough, but I was wondering if the goal would count if it was touched by a high stick and went off the opposing team's stick into their own net? Also, how do they decide who gets the goal? It seems that Fehr got a free one on that? Would they review it later or does what goes on the score sheet, stay on the score sheet?
Thank you for all your great answers and I loved your last article about the "human aspect" of being a referee.
Kerry, will you please explain to me why the 2nd Washington goal was allowed to stand last night. It was clear that the puck was hit with a high stick and no Canadien player gained any form of control prior to the puck entering the net. I enjoy reading your comments although I must add I do not always agree with the end result.
Josiah and David:
While Jason Chimera made every effort to tip the puck with what would have been deemed a high stick, replays showed that not to be the case. Instead, Carey Price beat Chimera to the touch and contacted the puck with the top of his blocker which caused the shot by Jack Hillen from the point to roll up and over Price and into the net. At no time did Eric Fehr touch the puck following Hillen's shot on goal and Carey Price's blocker deflection of the puck into the net.
The goal should have been credited to Jack Hillen with assists (if deserving) given to the Caps player or players that provided the puck to Hillen. The Official League Statistician can review the tape of the goal and make a correction following the game.
The play went to video review and the men in the Situation Room in Toronto confirmed that Referee Chris Lee's correct call to allow the goal would stand.
Go to NHL.com's Situation Room Blog to review the play for yourself.
My understanding of officiating for all of the years that I have watched and played hockey is that if a referee does not see the infraction, then he is not to call what he believes was an infraction.
However, during the Ottawa/Tampa game - with Ottawa desperate for two points to solidify a playoff spot, the Ottawa player (Peter Regin) won a draw, sliding the hand right to the bottom of the stick. At no time did his hand leave the stick and cover the puck, and more important, the stick actually played the puck.
Yet, the referee called a penalty on Ottawa for covering the puck with his hand, putting Ottawa down two men for a full two minutes. This call was made despite obviously not seeing the infraction. As an official, it's easy to apologize to a coach or player saying "Sorry, I never saw the infraction." However, it's much harder to apologize explaining, "I thought I saw an infraction."
First question, do you agree that this call was incorrect, and second - if it is the case that an official should not make a call that he does not clearly observe, what course of action us usually taken to further train game officials to make sure this type of error does not happen in the future?
Glenn K. Doody
It is obvious from the replay that Peter Regin never touched the puck with his hand and the wrong call was made by the Referee. You're observation that Regin's hand was well down the shaft of his stick, just above the blade gave the Referee a visual from his vantage point, on the opposite side along the goal line, that it was Regin's hand and not the stick blade that contacted the puck. The Referee didn't guess—it is what he saw; or should I say was sure that he saw! This visual impairment resulted in faulty judgment.
Glenn, moving forward I am going to present a suggestion on your behalf that I hope will be considered as a training exercise for the NHL Officials. Whenever a puck is shot over the glass by a defending player from within this defending zone the Officials usually gather for a consultation to make sure the puck was not deflected and an accurate call is made.
The same consultation should take place when a team is about to be penalized for a faceoff violation; especially one that results in a second penalty! The closest Official to a play of this nature is the Linesman that conducts the faceoff. He should always remain focused on the actions of the two centers after dropping the puck to best determine if a hand was used to win the draw. He is generally standing right over top of the two centers and looking down on the action.
We have seen that this method is not always fool proof when earlier in the season a puck that bounced upward from the Linesman's 'faulty' drop deflected off a center man's glove and was deemed to have been batted/played with a hand. This resulted in an incorrect face-off violation being assessed by that Linesman. That play, along with Peter Regin's clean face-off win further verifies the need for a quick consultation by the Officials to provide input from all angles and reduce the risk of making an incorrect call.
I hope your training exercise is adopted Glenn.