Monday, October 15, 2007

Gerber the innovator!

Apparently when the Sens were playing the Rangers on Saturday night, Brendan Shanahan was arguing with the referee regarding Martin Gerber heroically throwing the puck out of the zone on the 5-on-3 powerplay; notably, why it wasn't a penalty. I also heard the commentators of the Toronto-Buffalo game wondering why there was no penalty. Well, gentlemen, I'll tell you why. Take a look at the NHL rule book:

"A goalkeeper shall be assessed a minor penalty when he throws the puck forward towards the opponent’s net. In the case where the puck thrown forward by the goalkeeper being taken by an opponent, the Referee shall allow the resulting play to be completed, and if goal is scored by the non-offending team, it shall be allowed and no penalty given; but if a goal is not scored, play shall be stopped and a minor penalty shall be imposed against the goalkeeper."

National Hockey League Official Rules 2007-08,
Rule 67.3 (page 91), emphasis added

You'll probably notice one passage in particular; "towards the opponent's net". Since the Gerbinator simply threw the puck out of the zone towards the corner, no penalty was assessed. Good work, referees Dennis LaRue and Mike Hasenfratz and linesmen Greg Devorski and Mark Shewchyk!
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