NHL Considering Crucial Rule Change to Goaltending

Published December 4, 2022 at 6:58 PM

There was some extreme controversy circling around the NHL after Jets' goalie, Connor Hellebuyck, lost his helmet and the refs did not call the play dead.

As you can see, this was a crucial goal, so of course there is going to be controversy.

Hellebuyck lost his helmet and was injured after a collision just outside of the crease. I have always been under the impression that this is a situation in which the play should be called dead. I thought that the rule was always that the play is blown dead if the goalie loses their helmet.

So why did the refs not blow the play dead? Well, apparently there is more to the rule that I had thought. Here is the official ruling, curtesy of Blades of Steel.

''NHL Rule 9 – Uniforms – 9.6 – Helmets – When a goalkeeper has lost his helmet and/or face mask and his team has control of the puck, the play shall be stopped immediately to allow the goalkeeper the opportunity to regain his helmet and/or face mask. When the opposing team has control of the puck, play shall only be stopped if there is no immediate and impending scoring opportunity. This stoppage of play must be made by the Referee. When play is stopped because the goalkeeper has lost his helmet and/or face mask, the ensuing face-off shall take place at one of the defending team's end zone face-off spots.''

It appears that this play has opened up some eyes, and the NHL is prepared to address the situation.

Here is a quote from insider, Elliote Friedman:

''There is definitely going to be something done in the aftermath of the Jason Robertson goal when Connor Hellebuyck's mask was knocked off last Friday. Maybe it's as simple as a more aggressive whistle, since GMs recognize goalies need to be protected. In the days since that occurred, there's also been a demand to make sure «mask-off» doesn't get abused or become a strategy. Last season, St. Louis Blues goalie Jordan Binnington received a delay-of-game penalty for removing his mask in a game against the Jets. Another suggestion was making a chin-strap mandatory — an attempt that failed in 2014. Goalies refused that as part of the equipment slimdown. «Goalie Gear Nerd» on Twitter made an interesting point, that this wouldn't work anyways because of the way the mask is designed to fall under contact.''

Credit to Blades of Steel for coverage of the story.
December 4   |   123 answers
NHL Considering Crucial Rule Change to Goaltending

Should the play have been blown dead?

Yes9274.8 %
No3125.2 %
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