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More on Habs' first goal

I completely hate Montreal's first goal last night. Pushed from behind by Andrej Sekera, Travis Moen is dumped into Ryan Miller and his slide propels Miller and the puck over the goal line as the net is jarred off. Check out the video here.

Seriously now, how many goals might Alexander Ovechkin get this year if a play like that is allowed? 70? 80? Just plow through the goalie like it's no problem. And isn't every team going to need about three goalies to get through the season with all the injuries that would result?

So I checked the rulebook on this one this morning. Here's what I found:

Rule 78.5: "Apparent goals shall be disallowed by the Referee ..."
    Section ix When a goalkeeper has been pushed into the net together with the puck after making a save. See also 69.6.

Seems pretty obvious. Miller said he made a save and stopped the puck's momentum (although the puck still appeared to be sliding through his legs on the replay). If that's the case, no goal, right? Hmmm. Let's see 69.6.

"In the event that a goalkeeper has been pushed into the net together with the puck by an attacking player after making a stop, the goal will be disallowed. If applicable, appropriate penalties will be assessed. If, however, in the opinion of the Referee, the attacking player was pushed or otherwise fouled by a defending player causing the goalkeeper to be pushed into the net together with the puck, the goal can be permitted. In the event that the puck is under a player in or around the crease area (deliberately or otherwise), a goal cannot be scored by pushing this player together with the puck into the goal."

OK, the underline is mine for emphasis. I think that's the out to allow the goal to stand as goofy as the whole thing is. The section itself is pretty contradictory too -- the referee can allow the goal but the goal can't be scored by pushing a player that has the puck underneath him?

I think when push comes to shove (bad pun I know), the officials have the case to count the goal. But I wouldn't want to be a goalie if this kind of stuff is let go all season. We don't want to be back to where we were with stupid crease rules in No Goal days but the NHL better find a happy medium to protect the goalies too.

---Mike Harrington



NHL | Sabres | Sabres game day
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John Vogl

John Vogl

John Vogl has been covering the Sabres since 2002-03, an era that has included playoff runs, last-place finishes and three ownership changes. The award-winning writer is the Buffalo chapter chairman for the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.

@BuffNewsVogl |

About Sabres Edge

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has been covering the Buffalo Sabres since 2007. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association and can vouch that exposed flesh freezes instantly when walking in downtown Winnipeg in January.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |