In the second period of the Colorado Avalanche vs. Montreal Canadiens game on Saturday night, Alex Galchenyuk scored a goal after immediately coming out of the penalty box and gave the Canadiens a 2-1 lead.
It was a strong play, but it also had something that wasn’t allowed. See if you can spot the major problem with Galchenyuk’s initial play to turn the puck over while I play the popular theme “One of These Things is Not Like the Other Ones” in my head.
Hockey Night in Canada seemed to think this was a legal play, saying one foot on this ice is good enough, but the NHL rule book would disagree.
Rule 56.2 – A minor penalty shall be imposed on any identifiable player on the players’ bench or penalty bench who, by means of his stick or his body, interferes with the movements of the puck or any opponent on the ice during the progress of the play. In addition, should a player about to come onto the ice, play the puck while one or both skates are still on the players’ or penalty bench, a minor penalty for interference shall be assessed.
This is a quick play, but there is also a referee staring right down the line at this, and just plain didn’t make the call.
That being said, Jan Hejda played the ensuing 1 vs. 2 terribly, giving way too much space to Galchenyuk and giving him absolutely no pressure. Yes, the defenseman in that situation is supposed to take away the pass, but Hejda was unaware of where the other player was. Had he noticed this, it’s an easy choice to challenge the puck-carrier and force a much more difficult shot rather than allowing him to walk in on the goalie completely unchallenged.
In the end, however, the NHL is supposed to review all scoring plays no matter what, and they didn’t notice this? Pretty massive failure by the officials here on a game-changing goal.