Dallas Stars center Radek Faksa scored a power play goal with a broken stick.  Despite the Avs’ attempt to challenge the play, the goal stood after review.

With Dallas on the powerplay midway through the second period, Faksa flipped the rebound of a Tyler Seguin shot past Colorado netminder Phillipp Grubauer. The Stars center broke his stick on the shot, with the shaft clearly coming apart as the puck was released.


The Avalanche challenged the play, believing that play should have been stopped as result of the broken stick.

Challenges for missed stoppages were added to the rulebook for the start of the 2019-20 season.  Eligible situations include hand passes, pucks out of play in the spectator netting, and pucks played with a high stick, as well as other potential situations where play should have been stopped.  Play does not stop when a player breaks his stick.

In this case, Faksa appeared to have broken his stick on the shot.  Rule 10.3 covers broken sticks:

A player whose stick is broken may participate in the game provided he drops the broken stick. A minor penalty shall be imposed for an infraction of this rule.

Had the puck not gone in, Faksa would have been required to drop his broken stick.  In no case, though, would play have been stopped as a result.  Faksa did not continue to play with a broken stick beyond the shot on which the stick was revealed to be broken.

“I tipped the puck and I just saw the rebound and put it in,” said Faksa. “After that, I saw the broken stick, so I was sure it’s a good goal.”

Even if Faksa had continued playing with a broken stick, such play would be ineligible for a challenge. Teams can only challenge for a missed stoppage, not a missed penalty call.

On the Stars’ goal, the puck entered the net as part of a continuous play where the stick was broken on the shot that ultimately scored the goal.  With no reason to have stopped play, there was no reason to have challenged.

From the NHL:

Colorado requested a Coach’s Challenge to review if Dallas’ Radek Faksa scored a goal with a broken stick. This play does not fit the applicable standards for a missed game stoppage event in the offensive zone under Rule 38.10. Therefore, Colorado is assessed a 4:00 double-minor penalty for delaying the game for their second unsuccessful Challenge in accordance with Rule 38.8.

It’s worth noting that Rule 37 specifies the situations where the league reviews the legality of goals, including whether they were deflected in with a high stick, kicked in, or otherwise legally scored.  This is separate from a Coach’s Challenge.  Teams are not able to challenge for reviews of those situations.

As for the Avalanche, not only did they find themselves down 3-1, but also shorthanded for four minutes.  Since the Avalanche had already issued an unsuccessful Coach’s Challenge earlier in the game, they were given a double-minor for delay of game.

Tuesday’s game between the Stars and Avalanche was the first time this season that a team failed on two Coach’s Challenges in the same game, and therefore the first double-minor handed out for delay of game as a result. Colorado head coach Jared Bednar appeared surprised by the four-minute penalty.

Colorado previously challenged the Stars’ first goal which came just 19 seconds into the game, citing goaltender interference. That goal was upheld after review, with the Avalanche assessed a minor penalty for delay of game.


Dallas won the game 4-1. Referees were Chris Rooney (#5) and Corey Syvret (#42). Linesmen were Bryan Pancich (#94) and James Tobias (#61).