Chris Pronger and the Sean Avery RuleThe Pronger incident:
The Sean Avery incident that brought all of this on:
I don't know what I think about all this... I wasn't a fan of the Sean Avery rule when they started it a couple of years back. You're screening the goalie... so what if you're trying to get into his head. But as time went on I came to accept it and realize that if you're back is turned to the play and you're just trying to mess with a goaltender's head, how is that hockey?
As highlighted by Mark Trible in his recap yesteday, the "Sean Avery Rule" is to be applied “…to a situation when an offensive player positions himself facing the opposition goaltender and engages in actions such as waving his arms or stick in front of the goaltender's face, for the purpose of improperly interfering with and/or distracting the goaltender as opposed to positioning himself to try to make a play.”
According to the letter of the law, what Pronger did wasn't against any rule in the NHL. But according to hockey operations, it goes against the spirit of the rule... but there are so many holes in the way it was called yesterday that you can't really accept the way it was handled. I didn't like what Pronger did and we don't need that stuff in the NHL, blocking a goalie's view with your hand, but why wasn't it called right away? Why was it only called when the goal was scored?
Way too many questions that the referees clearly aren't able to answer.
If they're going to keep this rule and have teams lose games because of it... it needs a clarification.