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InGoal Update: New NHL Spin-o-Rama Shootout Rule Tested by Sharks?

InGoal Update: New NHL Spin-o-Rama Shootout Rule Tested by Sharks?

Los Angeles Kings Goalie Jonathan Quick

Jonathan Quick was part of a shootout video review Thursday after the NHL clarified rules about stopping the puck. (Photo by Scott Slingsby)

Lost amid all the dizzying talk about head shots and concussions at the recent General Managers meetings in Florida was a decision to clarify the rules on spin-o-rama moves in shootouts.

Specifically, the NHL re-iterated the puck has to keep moving in order for the move to be legal and a goal to count.

The clarification came as the result of Tampa Bay forward Martin St. Louis’ spin-o-rama goal against Chicago on March 10, in which the Lightning star appeared to stop the puck after completing his twirl, quickly teeing it up to roof a backhand past Corey Crawford and just under the cross bar:

“The hard part is interpreting the puck stopping and it will be interpreted by video review,” Colin Campbell, the NHL’s senior vice president of hockey operations, told reporters in Florida. “When we first introduced shootouts the challenge was they were new and we had a number of questions to answer. This is one of the last lingering questions, what’s acceptable and what is not.”

It’s a question that appeared to be tested by San Jose defenseman Dan Boyle in the first round of Thursday night’s shootout against Los Angeles. Kings goalie Jonathan Quick did a great job staying with Boyle as skated in slowly and made a move to the right in tight, appearing to lose the puck for a second before stopping it – or at least coming close – and lifting a quick snap shot over the goalie’s outstretched glove. As the video shows (it starts at the 1-minute mark), the Kings weren’t happy about it, and a review ensued:

Of course, as most of you have already noticed, Boyle wasn’t trying a spin-o-rama. Even the Kings seemed unsure what they were arguing in their post-game quotes, with some indicating the protest was more about whether Quick got a piece of Boyle’s first move in front with his short poke check attempt. But as an NHL source confirmed (not to mention the rulebook), St. Louis’ spin move simply brought the issue of stopping pucks to light, and all shootout goals will be reviewed to ensure continuous forward motion.

Here’s how it reads in the NHL’s Rule 24.2:

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.

The lacrosse-like move whereby the puck is picked up on the blade of the stick and “whipped” into the net shall be permitted provided the puck is not raised above the height of the shoulders at any time and when released, is not carried higher than the crossbar. See also 80.1.

The spin-o-rama type move where the player completes a 360° turn as he approaches the goal, shall be permitted as this involves continuous motion.

Quick was taking it in stride (which is easier after winning) when he talked to LA Kings Insider:

“He came in really slow and I just tried to out-wait him and make him make the first move. I don’t know. I was staring at the puck. He found a little hole. I really don’t know if he stopped or not. Tough to tell. But I think, at the end of the day, that’s what the league wants to see. They want to see some creative moves, they want to see some goals. It’s a good approach to the shootout on his part. We won the game, so that’s all that matters.”

Speaking of Quick, whose great season in Los Angeles has been largely overlooked, we missed his “magical” save from a couple of days earlier. As good as Quick was to get across and get a piece of the Jarome Iginla blast, the way the puck appears to change directions, taking a mysterious right-hand turn just as it appears to be headed in, had many wondering if the Kings stopper has been bending spoons in his spare time. Others thought it must have tipped the end of his stick on the way through, but thanks to a frame-by-frame breakdown it appears to be little more than a good bounce off the ice. You know that they say about good and lucky:

About The Author

Kevin Woodley

Kevin Woodley is a rec-league target and former contributing editor of the Goalie News magazine. He has written about the Vancouver Canucks and NHL for The Associated Press, USA Today, Sports Illustrated and The Hockey News for the last decade, and covered the 2010 Olympics for The AP.