Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Goalies Now Fair Game?

1) That's what the Buffalo Sabres contend after the league failed to suspend Bruins forward Milan Lucic for a hit on Sabres' net minder Ryan Miller. Lucic knocked the East Lansing Michigan native out of the game with an apparent concussion which will side line him for an undetermined period. Sabres coach Lindy Ruff was outraged that Brendan Shanahan decided that the 2 minute penalty that Lucic received was all that was appropriate in this incident. Citing Lucic's intent was not to run the sabres goalie. Here is a short Youtube version of the said-incident: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4EjRTYcpxk&noredirect=1

2) Our reason for bring this story to light is NOT to take a side one way or the other here but to address the issue head on. As I and Fauxrumors have long asked its time to allow players to make "legal contact" with goalies who wander outside their crease and play the puck. No, they shouldn't be boarded and have their heads targeted, but should be able to be hit like Lucic did to Miller, who was well outside of his crease, and took it upon himself to play the puck. To often we have seen goalies use the fact that referees protect them like sacred cows to go out of their net to play the puck with impunity. We believe that is why the dumb trapezoid rule was implemented. Goalies like Brodeur were feeling quite comfortable to go and become a third defensemen thus the league decided to increase scoring they needed to reign in the ability of goalies to play the puck as much.

3) Seemed like an odd/dumb way of treating a problem. Why not address it more directly? If goalies like Miller Brodeur, etc knew that they would possibly get knocked off the puck and possibly out of position as a result, they would be far less likely to leave their crease in the first place, making it unnecessary to paint silly shapes like trapezoids behind the goals. As long as they weren't hit illegally we would have no issue with body contact outside of the crease when a goalie plays the puck. The pendulum has shifted WAY too far from where it was 30-40 years ago when goalies were "fair game" if they left their crease. A hit like the one by Lucic wouldn't be seen as menacing or illegal and bring the ire of the sabres, but would make Ruff angry with Miller for placing himsel in a vulnerable position in the first place.

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