Skip to content

About that controversial OT faceoff penalty from the Minnesota-Nashville game…

Feb 11, 2013, 4:28 PM EDT

One of the stranger calls of this young NHL season occurred during overtime of Minnesota’s 2-1 victory over Nashville on Saturday.

About halfway through the extra session, Preds center Paul Gaustad was given a two-minute delay of game/faceoff violation minor for “batting” the puck with his glove.

This, of course, is a direct violation of one of the new faceoff rules for this season — No. 76.4, which prohibits players from playing the puck with their hands.

The Wild proceeded to score (and win) on the ensuing power play, much to the chagrin of the Predators, who protested the call vehemently.

The protestations were based partly on the puck drop of linesman Ryan Galloway — here’s a GIF of the incident, courtesy the Nashville Examiner:

Hardly a textbook draw, given the bounce (though it’s not like he Gronkowski’d the puck.) The bigger issue was the subsequent penalty call, which seemed harsh given the game was in overtime.

Following the contest, The Tennessean asked the NHL’s Situation Room for clarification on the call, which garnered this response:

The referee deemed that rule 76.4 applied because as it reads “Both players facing-off are prohibited from batting the puck with their hand in an attempt to win the face-off.”

That rule applied because the puck was batted by Paul Gaustad’s left glove off the face off.

Now, former NHL referee Kerry Fraser has weighed in on the call:

Even though I have attempted to provide a reasonable explanation as to why the linesman felt Gaustad’s actions resulted in a hand pass, I do not believe this interpretation to be correct. 

In observance of the spirit and intent of Rule 76.4, I deem that incidental contact of the puck resulted to the back of Gaustad’s glove from his natural hand motion in an attempt to win the draw and that a face-off violation did not occur on this play.

There was no deliberate attempt by the Nashville center to play the puck with his hand.

Fraser then explains the best course of action would’ve been for to blow the play dead, reset the clock and re-do the faceoff.

Issues with the new faceoff rules are popping up throughout the league. In Washington, players told NBC Channel 4 they’ve had a hard time adjusting to the new regulations.

Matt Hendricks said he’s noticed referees are calling faceoff penalties “pretty strongly” this season, while Jay Beagle said he was lucky to avoid getting called for one earlier this season.

“There was one instance, I actually tried to grab it and swing it back with my hand and missed,” he explained. “I was thankful for that.

“After that, I was like, ‘Gee, I gotta watch it.'”

Latest Posts
  1. What if the Blue Jackets and Johansen don’t reach a deal?

    Aug 30, 2014, 4:05 PM EDT

    Ryan Johansen Getty Images

    The two sides are not budging in contract negotiations.

  2. Under Pressure: Cory Schneider

    Aug 30, 2014, 3:06 PM EDT

    Cory Schneider AP

    Will try to guide the Devils back to the postseason after two straight seasons without playoff hockey in New Jersey.

  3. Binghamton Senators unveil new jerseys

    Aug 30, 2014, 2:30 PM EDT

    Will wear a different look in 2014-15.

  4. Ryan Smyth keeping busy as camp approaches

    Aug 30, 2014, 1:30 PM EDT

    ryansmythgetty Getty Images

    After playing over 1,000 NHL games, he’s enjoying the time away.

  5. Report: Devils sign Pelley, add depth

    Aug 30, 2014, 12:38 PM EDT

    Image (1) NewJerseyDevils_logo-thumb-250x243-22093.gif for post 15654

    RFA David Wohlberg joins Albany

  6. Devils’ Gomez considered retirement

    Aug 30, 2014, 11:22 AM EDT

    Scott Gomez AP

    After spending portions of last season as a healthy scratch, he’s looking to revive his career in New Jersey.

  7. Will Jagr finally show his age next season?

    Aug 30, 2014, 10:11 AM EDT

    New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils Getty Images

    Father Time always wins … eventually.

  8. Trotz (kinda) downplays doubts about working with Ovechkin

    Aug 30, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

    Washington Capitals Introduce General Manager Brian MacLellan And Coach Barry Trotz Getty Images

    ” … Until we go into the season and start playing real games, our relationship will be fine.”

  9. It’s New Jersey Devils day on PHT

    Aug 30, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    Adam Henrique, Ryane Clowe, Michael Ryder AP

    Can they shoot out of mediocrity?

  10. Looking to make the leap: Ryan Spooner

    Aug 29, 2014, 11:00 PM EDT

    Boston Bruins v San Jose Sharks Getty Images

    Can he fit in well enough to embrace this opportunity?

  11. Poll: How should Boston handle its cap crunch?

    Aug 29, 2014, 10:10 PM EDT

    marchboy Getty Images

    Should they make a move or play hardball with free agents?

  12. Nicklas Backstrom finally got his silver medal today

    Aug 29, 2014, 6:29 PM EDT

    backstromsilver

    “I’m sleeping with it tonight.”

  13. Report: Flames expected to try out Brookbank

    Aug 29, 2014, 4:57 PM EDT

    Chicago Blackhawks v Nashville Predators Getty Images

    The Chicago Blackhawks let him walk.

  14. Report: Moore-Bertuzzi lawsuit removed from court docket

    Aug 29, 2014, 2:15 PM EDT

    Bertuzzi Moore

    Was schedule for Ontario Superior Court Sept. 8

  15. Video: Bruins participate in commercials to promote NHL 15

    Aug 29, 2014, 1:18 PM EDT

    Patrice Bergeron AP

    A pair of hilarious ads to promote the game.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. C. Anderson (1570)
  2. J. Harding (1565)
  3. B. Bishop (1558)
  4. C. Price (1493)
  5. M. Fleury (1438)
  1. D. Alfredsson (1426)
  2. A. Ekblad (1403)
  3. M. Staal (1376)
  4. J. Giguere (1332)
  5. D. Setoguchi (1262)