Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
No-touch icing rule praised
The event is being played under international rules and includes one of the hockey commentator's most passionate causes -- no-touch icing. Cherry has spent years trying to build a case for the rule on his Coach's Corner segment, but the NHL has stuck to its traditional interpretation of the rule, where a defending player has to touch the puck before icing is called.
Touch icing allows quick and opportunistic players to get into the opponent's zone and touch the puck before a defender, negating icing and creating an offensive opportunity. But the resulting mad dash for the puck is dangerous and can result in injuries.
At least one of the guys competing at these Games is happy to see no-touch icing in Vancouver. Finnish defenceman Sami Salo was once injured while racing back for the puck in an NHL game and thinks the international rule creates a safer environment for players.
"It's fine by me," Salo said Wednesday. "I've gotten hurt once with the touch icing so I wouldn't mind it being no-touch ice, but I see also the reason why they have it. It creates a lot of chances for the other team when you can just skate for the puck."
Another difference in the international game applies to goaltenders. NHL goalies can only handle the puck in a trapezoid painted behind the goal-line -- which essentially limits their movement to the area directly behind the net. That doesn't exist in the international game.
Canadian goaltender Roberto Luongo found himself handling the puck in the corner against Norway and acknowledged afterwards that it was unusual to be in "uncharted waters."
-- The Canadian Press
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 20, 2010 $sourceSection0
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