Well, that didn’t take long.

The St. Louis Blues were awarded the first penalty shot of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Referee Jake Brenk, officiating his first playoff game, called a hook against Minnesota Wild defenseman Jonas Brodin who was chasing down Blues winger Ivan Barbashev on a breakaway.


Brodin’s stickwork was sufficient to break up Barbashev’s scoring attempt. The official also felt it was hooking.

The situation definitely met the four criteria for a penalty shot.

In order for a penalty shot to be awarded for a player being fouled from behind, the following four (4) criteria must have been met:

(i) The infraction must have taken place in the neutral or attacking zone (i.e. over the puck carrier’s own blue line).

(ii) The infraction must have been committed from behind.

(iii) The player in possession and control (or, in the judgment of the Referee, the player clearly would have obtained possession and control of the puck) must have been denied a reasonable chance to score. The fact that the player got a shot off does not automatically eliminate this play from the penalty shot consideration criteria. If the
foul was from behind and the player was denied a “more” reasonable scoring opportunity due to the foul, then the penalty shot should still be awarded.

(iv) The player in possession and control (or, in the judgment of the Referee, the player clearly would have obtained possession and control) must have had no opposing player between himself and the goalkeeper.


The issue was with the infraction itself.

55.1 Hooking – Hooking is the act of using the stick in a manner that enables a player to restrain an opponent.

When a player is checking another in such a way that there is only stick-to-stick contact, such action is not to be penalized as hooking.


While Brenk made the call in real-time, we have the benefit of multiple replays to review the call.  Brodin’s stickwork appeared to be clean.

Thankfully for the Wild, goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury was able to stop Barbashev’s penalty attempt, keeping the score 0-0.

Eighty-five penalty shots have been taken in the history of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, with 25 successful conversions (29.8%).  The most recent previous playoff penalty shot came in 2020, when three penalty shots were awarded; one resulted in a goal.

This was the third playoff penalty shot attempt all-time for the St. Louis Blues — and their second against a team from Minnesota.  Vladimir Tarasenko successfully scored on one against the Sharks in 2019; Jimmy Roberts failed to score on his attempt against the North Stars in 1968.

Officials for the game are referees Jake Brenk (#26) and Kelly Sutherland (#11) with linesmen Brandon Gawryletz (#64) and Kiel Murchison (#79).