Friday, May 16, 2008

For Crease Sakes!

As for last night's question, goal or no? I stayed up to watch the replay on the Score. It's a goal for sure, for now... it gets a little tricky to explain in writing but here goes...let's get out the history books...Was it in '98 or '99 that the big "crease crackdown" happened? There was a league wide mandate to protect goalies and so any body part, foot or toe in the crease and the goal didn't count. So many goals were called back and ones that should have been weren't. Ask Buffalo about Brett Hull's Stanley Cup winner, foot in the crease, should have been called back, but it was in Dallas and they were handing out the hardware when they should have been reviewing the goal. From the Dallas perspective it was a hockey play. Whether Hull was in the crease or not shouldn't have mattered. He didn't stop Hasek from making the save, he just scored a great goal. If Hasek was a butterfly goalie or had a stand-up style, he probably would have made the save. Hasek affected the outcome more than Hull's supposed crease violation. It's a shame that all season long the league called back goals for ridiculous reasons, so Hull's game winner has a little less shine. I'm worried this is where we are going again, games being decided by silly rules, by a video judge in Toronto. I'll have lots to write about but the hockey and the fans will suffer.

Getting back to this year's goals. To me it seems that the league wants to and should crackdown on guys standing in the crease, facing the play but backing into the goalie, or waiting to be pushed into the goalie by a defenseman. It's a hockey play to screen the goalie but he does need the blue paint to give him the space to make the save. Post lockout era hockey is cracking down on clutching and grabbing and holding in the 3 zones, why not in the net area? If the defender isn't allowed to clear the area for fear of an obstruction penalty, and the goalie isn't allowed to do a Hextall on crease crashers, then the refs need to protect the space in the blue paint and the goalies.

Last night's 2nd Philly goal was a goal ( i think), here's why... you can bring the puck into the crease or follow the puck into the crease without it being a penalty during a hockey play...the puck is live until it's covered and the whistle goes. I'm not advocating running the goalie to score, that's not a hockey play, that's a penalty.But when a guy is chasing the puck into the crease, it's gotta stand.
Unlike what's been going on in the Wings/Stars series though, last night we had Briere coming in from the side boards cutting to the net. He had a tiny bit of real estate there but Gill was closing off his lane and angling him towards the crease. The Flyer player drove to the net and was sent to the net at the same time. I think that because he was carrying the puck in with him, it's a goal.

Here's a solution. If the ref's going to let a player screen and or impede the goalie, let the defense try to clobber the hell out of the guy to move him out. Old time hockey. In the current rules the D man will get a penalty for obstruction if he uses too much force, that's wrong. Where's the hockey? When still in Ottawa, Chara was given an obstruction penalty in front of the net and the ref said to him to explain the penalty call - "you were too strong for that guy". Are you kidding me? Penalizing a player for being too strong? It happened.

1 comment:

U NoWho said...

Dear Voice,

Ok - thanks for clearing that up. So are you saying it's ok now to take a run at the golatender as long as you are carrying the puck and score a goal?