“This was the last week,” Kuzmin said. “People couldn’t wait for the next part of the series, and I was just hoping we could get these last 10 chapters out.”
With the season coming to an end, the NHL’s most important position is about to get a little easier.
By rule, a goaltender can’t be injured playing in his first NHL game.
The rule was put into place to prevent teams from buying time while waiting for their goalies to recover from injuries. The NHL’s most important position hasn’t been on the ice in a game since the 2000-01 season because the league had to decide whether to start re-examining the goaltending rule because goaltenders were beginning to get back to an injury-free game state.
That decision ended up in the 2014 NHL Draft. The NHL, however, will have to make a new decision soon because it’s the final season of the 15-year-old rule.
“I think it’s time to do so because [the system] doesn’t seem to be working very well right now,” said GM Jim Benning. “I’m sure going forward it’s going to have to be reviewed, but I don’t think any goaltender is playing in the NHL right now playing at a high position, and if it isn’t doing what it needs to be, that’s when it’s time we have to revisit the rule.”
The NHL’s goaltending rules are part of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) that dates back to 1987-88.
The NHL has changed the rule twice in the last five years. It began with the new NHL-NHLPA re-entry draft in 2014, and is the first time the CBA includes a mandatory review of the goaltending rule.
It’s the reason why the CBA only needs to be extended through 2022-23, unless the league and NHLPA decide to make it a 14-year contract. The expiration date will then change based on the number of years the NHL-NHLPA contracts have expired.
“The rules were changed this year [2012-13], and I think we did the right thing in bringing that on,” Benning said.
If the league can’t review the rule to make sure it’s up to the standards being implemented by NHL GM’s, then it will start re-working the goalie rule. But there will be no guarantees.
“This is going to
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