In the waning seconds of Tuesday night’s game between Ottawa and New Jersey, The Senators nearly scored to send the game to overtime. The Devils were pinned in the defensive zone, clinging to a one-goal lead. Senators winger Bobby Ryan had a wide-open net, but was unable to get the puck past a diving Cory Schneider. The New Jersey goaltender’s desperate dive across the crease sent his stick flying.
Did Schneider throw his stick at the puck? After further review, it doesn’t look like he did. His stick hit off the post as he lunged to his right, and the force of his movement sent the stick sliding across the ice.
But what if he had?
It would have been a penalty shot. From the NHL rulebook:
Rule 53 – Throwing Equipment
53.6 Penalty Shot – When any member of the defending team, including the Coach or any non-playing person, throws or shoots any part of a stick or any other object or piece of equipment at the puck or puck carrier in his defending zone, the Referee or Linesman shall allow the play to be completed and if a goal is not scored, a penalty shot shall be awarded to the non-offending team. This shot shall be taken by the player designated by the Referee as the player fouled.
Of course, that’s not an automatic goal. Bobby Ryan’s 2-for-9 in shootouts over the past two seasons.