'That dreaded trapezoid'
That's what the Detroit Red Wings broadcast team called the section behind the net where the goaltender can play puck tonight.
Here's one new rule that's seldom come into play so far this year, but it did tonight. With the Avalanche dump in only a few feet outside of this 'zone,' Detroit netminder Manny Legace had to watch helplessly as Colorado's Alex Tanguay picked up the puck, swooped behind the net and passed to an open Ian Laperriere who notched his seventh goal of the year.
As I said, the 'dreaded trapezoid' hasn't come into play often this year, but when it did tonight, I was glad it was there. Otherwise, the play would have just consisted of watching Legace waddle into the corner and fend off the guy who could do something interesting with that puck — Tanguay.
As an aside, what a year for Laperrierre, whose 10 goals in 2003-04 were his best totals since his rookie season in 1994-95. The Avalanche's goals-by-committee strategy is working well — they're third in league scoring thanks largely to the exploits of guys like Laperriere, Antti Laaksonen and Steve Konowalchuk.
Who knew they had exploits in them?