Arizona’s Michael Bunting completed the hat trick on a play that withstood a Kings’ coach’s challenge for offside.
While some – including the broadcast team – were confused by the play, it was the right call.
Let’s break it down:
- Arizona’s Conor Garland was still in the attacking zone as the Kings cleared the puck down the ice.
- Defenseman Alex Goligoski fired a pass to Bunting, waiting at the offensive blue line.
- Bunting played the puck in the neutral zone – making contact to slow it down before it crossed the line.
- This created a brief delayed offside. With Garland still skating back, Bunting held off from touching the puck in the offensive zone.From Rule 83.3: If, during the course of the delayed off-side, any member of the attacking team touches the puck … the Linesman shall stop play for the off-side violation.
- Once Garland’s skates hit the blue line, he was cleared and free to re-enter the zone — and Bunting was free to legally play the puck, which he did.
Linesmen Ryan Gibbons (#58) and Julien Fournier (#56) reviewed the goal with the Situation Room.
From the NHL:
It was determined that Arizona’s Conor Garland legally tagged up at the blue line before Michael Bunting entered the offensive zone with the puck on his stick. \
Bunting delayed touching the puck in the offensive zone so Garland could tag up.
The Kings, already shorthanded, were given their sixth penalty of the game for the unsuccessful challenge.
Here’s a refresher on the Delayed Offside rule (83.3):
A situation where an attacking player (or players) has preceded the puck across the attacking blue line, but the defending team is in a position to bring the puck back out of its defending zone without any delay or contact with an attacking player, or, the attacking players are in the process of clearing the attacking zone.
If an off-side call is delayed, the Linesman shall drop his arm to nullify the off-side violation and allow play to continue if:
(i) All players of the offending team clear the zone at the same instant (skate contact with the blue line) permitting the attacking players to re-enter the attacking zone, or
(ii) The defending team passes or carries the puck into the neutral zone.
If, during the course of the delayed off-side, any member of the attacking team touches the puck, attempts to gain possession of a loose puck, forces the defending puck carrier further back into his own zone, or who is about to make physical contact with the defending puck carrier, the Linesman shall stop play for the off-side violation.
Once all attacking players have cleared the attacking zone and the Linesman has lowered his arm for the delayed off-side, all attacking players may legally enter the attacking zone and pursue the puck.
Good for Bunting for knowing the rule well enough to avoid touching the puck on the delayed offside.
Good for the officials for getting the call right – real-time and via review.
And great job by Jim Fox for knowing — and explaining — the play.
— Eric (@Kingsgifs) April 6, 2021
The Coyotes went on to win the game 5-2. Referees were Furman South (#44) and Kyle Rehman (#10); linesmen were Julien Fournier (#56) and Ryan Gibbons (#58).