Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop made a daring dive to break up a potential breakaway, blocking the puck and taking out Canadiens forward Andrew Shaw. What he did next, though, is what should’ve earned him a two-minute penalty.
Had Bishop simply covered the puck and not kept the play going, he’d have been called for Delay of Game.
63.2 Minor Penalty – A minor penalty shall be imposed on any player, including the goalkeeper, who holds, freezes or plays the puck with his stick, skates or body in such a manner as to deliberately cause a stoppage of play. With regard to a goalkeeper, this rule applies outside of his goal crease area.
If a goalkeeper comes out of his crease to “cut down the angle” on a shot and after making the save covers the puck, this shall be legal.
If the goalkeeper races out of his crease in an attempt to beat the attacking player to the puck and instead of playing the puck jumps on the puck causing a stoppage of play, this shall be a minor penalty for delay of game.
How he moved that puck, though, could have resulted in a different penalty. Rule 67.3 has it covered:
A goalkeeper shall be assessed a minor penalty when he throws the puck forward towards the opponent’s net.
In the case where the puck thrown forward by the goalkeeper being taken by an opponent, the Referee shall allow the resulting play to be completed, and if goal is scored by the non-offending team, it shall be allowed and no penalty given; but if a goal is not scored, play shall be stopped and a minor penalty shall be imposed against the goalkeeper.
Retired NHL goaltender Martin Biron agreed.
When Bishop moved the puck, he clearly threw it forward – even if towards the player benches. Bishop’s hand pass resulted in an advantage for the Lightning, as center Brayden Point was able to retrieve the puck and head in on a scoring chance.
If a player had pushed the puck up ice, the play would have been whistled down for a hand pass. When Bishop did it, he should’ve picked up a minor for delay of game.