Ask the Official: Goaltender Possession & Control of the Puck

QUESTION: Goalie covers the puck however the ref does not blow the whistle.  Can you keep going after the puck? What if you can see part of the puck from under the glove? What if it’s fully covered? My understanding is the play does not stop until the ref blows the whistle. This was men’s hockey and I was told by the ref that once the goalie covered the puck that I cannot go after it anymore. Isn’t the ref, using his whistle, the one who decides what is covered and what’s not?

ANSWER: Play should stop as soon as the official judges the goalkeeper has possession and control of the puck (notice there is no mention of whistle in this definition). This means once the goalkeeper covers the puck then in theory play is done. Additionally, we cannot think of any way to knock the puck loose without making some type of contact with the goalkeeper, and players may not make stick contact with the goalkeeper (“I was just playing to the whistle” is not an excuse).

Categories: Officials

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