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Gionta's Shootout Goal


I believe I was staring up at the rafters in a chorus of "Why, God, Why" at last night's game when CK asked me why Brian Gionta's shootout goal was declared a goal. I replied that it's really the referee's call when the puck has stopped in that situation. The crew reviewed the video again, presumably to see if the puck did indeed stop at any point, though I can't imagine that one could make out the puck on Hiller's equipment. This is one time when the black puck-hiding uniform worked against Anaheim.

For those rule hounds, the rules for the shootout are covered by NHL Rule 84.4 which incorporates Penalty Shot Rule 25 by reference. The first paragraph of Rule 25.2 reads:

25.2 Procedure - The Referee shall ask to have announced over the public address system the name of the player designated by him or selected by the team entitled to take the shot (as appropriate). He shall then place the puck on the center face-off spot and the player taking the shot will, on the instruction of the Referee (by blowing his whistle), play the puck from there and shall attempt to score on the goalkeeper. The puck must be kept in motion towards the opponent’s goal line and once it is shot, the play shall be considered complete. No goal can be scored on a rebound of any kind (an exception being the puck off the goal post or crossbar, then the goalkeeper and then directly into the goal), and any time the puck crosses the goal line or comes to a complete stop, the shot shall be considered complete. [emphasis added]

Now, I can't really see the puck in the video, but in theory, if Hiller holds still for a second, the referee can call the puck as stopped. Any video review would then have to prove the puck did not come to a complete stop. Sadly, Hiller continued to move backward toward the net, and the puck came loose as he opened his body. Sorry disheartened Ducks fans.