Recently in the NHL there has been controversy surrounding the rules of the shootout. More specifically, when a player is coming down the ice, the puck must continue momentum towards the net. The controversy began with the seldom used ‘spinorama’ move in which a player does a full 360 upon close contact to the net. Many players and coaches have shown displeasure towards the move believing that the puck goes against the rules of a shootout. Therefore the policies surrounding the shootout are being put into question by the media, especially the goal (see article) by San Jose Sharks forward Joe Pavelski, in which he begins a stopping motion and then continues forward.
The argument in support of Pavelski suggests that he was ‘stopping’ but did not necessarily ‘stop’. As well, the puck was continuously moving forward while Pavelski began to stop. Other stakeholders in the league believe that Pavelski comes to a full stop which should be considered no goal. The overall rule has been misinterpreted and misunderstood by many and has established a grey area for what should and should not be considered a goal.
Therefore there is a need by the league to address the situation to improve the policies within the shootout. Common controversial moves should be critically analyzed in order to determine there legality and provide a guideline for determining a good goal. Furthermore the rules should be rewritten and structured with words that can allow the referees to conclude on a call in the shootout without controversy.