FanPost

Confusing Intent with "Distinct Kicking Motion"

The NHL's rule book is filled with rules that are left open for interpretation by on-ice officiating staff. These types of actions occur dozens of times in an NHL game. The most obvious is the calling of penalties.

When Zach Parise propelled the puck into the net today with 2 seconds remaining in the Devils v. Islanders game, we found out the NHL rule book is even more open for interpretation than we thought. At live game speed, it appeared that Zach had no intent to kick the puck in. In his post game presser (I recommend watching here, it justifies my later point), Zach admits he did not agree with the call. Despite this, I believe the NHL made the right move in ruling Zach Parise's action a no goal.

I write this because Zach did propel the puck into the net with his skate. The puck was moving, but not towards the net and Zach sped up the puck by using his skate. Yes, we know that Zach did not mean to "kick" the puck in. When we as fans hear this, our first inclination is to think that the call is wrong. To get into more specifics regarding the rule, a distinct kicking motion must be seen to overrule the call. To any fan, the wording makes it sound as if "distinct kicking motion" implies intent to kick the puck into the net. This is not the case. The spirit of the rule is to overturn the action, not the intent. If this were the case, then the majority of penalties in the NHL would not be called - after all, the player might not have meant to "high stick" his opponent and "draw blood" to incur the "4 minute penalty instead of the 2 minute minor". Nonetheless, the action happened.

I just hope our Devils can move past this call. I'm sure Zach is hungry to win now!

All FanPosts and FanShots are the respective work of the author and not representative of the writers or other users of In Lou We Trust.

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