Tuesday, November 22, 2005

A shootout goalie swap

Tonight's Sabres-Rangers game featured something we have yet to see in the NHL — a goaltender swap during the shootout. After allowing the first goal by Martin Straka, Mika Noronen was pulled by Buffalo and replaced by Martin Biron.

Buffalo ended up losing the shootout 3-2, but it was a little odd seeing the swap happen. The rules stipulate that Noronen must be hurt in order to be taken out, but he didn't appear to be injured in any way (the Sabres broadcast booth seemed perplexed by the move, so if there was an injury, the viewers never saw it).

This creates a really curious scenario where teams can seemingly swap a goalie mid-shootout whenever they please. It's just another thing for the league to look into.


At 10:46 a.m., November 23, 2005, Blogger alan said...

James - Noronen apparently was playing hurt (groin) throughout the third period - Sam Rosen and John Davidson discussed it during the Rangers' broadcast, and Martin Biron was shown several times towards the end of the game warming up behind the bench. Don't know where the Sabres' broadcasters were, but the MSG guys were right on top of it.

If you haven't already, I'm sure you'll all see the ridiculous Hasek-ish save that Noronen made on Straka by kicking his leg up while lying on his stomach. He was fabulous throughout, though he was helped by no less than three shots (two by Jagr) that clanged off the inside of the post.

At 10:15 a.m., November 28, 2005, Blogger Tom L said...

To follow up on what Alan said, the only way a team can swap goalies once the shootout has started is in case of an injury, which is what Ruff did in this game (much to the frothing hatred of the Buffalo faithful on HF who hate Biron).

Lindy would have pulled Noronen earlier but wanted him to try and get the win on his own, as we deserved it.

It was a nice gesture towards a player many feel he's brutally mis-handled.



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