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NHL's Worst Rule Contest: Intent to Blow vs The Trapezoid

We have trudged our way through a few days of those silly distractions known as "games," and we are back in business for our little contest.

Today, a couple of the heavyweights from round one square off in a bout for the ages. Intent to Blow vs The Trapezoid. Choose well, my friends. We have already lost high sticking double minor, the shootout, slashing the stick, Rule 48, and the instigator along the way. Choose incorrectly, and you shall forever be mocked. Choose wisely, and the NHL has agreed to change the rule we crown champion*.

Today's Rules:

Intent to Blow, Rule 31.2:

As there is a human factor involved in blowing the whistle to stop play, the Referee may deem the play to be stopped slightly prior to the whistle actually being blown. The fact that the puck may come loose or cross the goal line prior to the sound of the whistle has no bearing if the Referee has ruled that the play had been stopped prior to this happening.

Trapezoid Rule 1.8

A restricted trapezoid-shaped area behind the goal will be laid out as follows: Five feet (5') outside of each goal crease (six feet (6') from each goal post), a two-inch (2") red line shall be painted extending from the goal line to a point on the end of the rink ten feet (10') from the goal crease (eleven feet (11') from the goal post) and continuing vertically up the kick plate (see diagram on the page iv preceding the table of contents). (Paint code PMS 186)

Not for nothing, I enjoy that the paint code is "PMS 186."

Why do these rules suck?

Intent to Blow (from previous post):

In every major sport (other than baseball), player are trained to play until they hear the whistle. In football, you don't stop running, in soccer, you always flop to the ground when touched by an opponent, basketball you always shoot the ball... until there is a whistle.

In hockey, players play until the whistle, jam away at a puck, etc, only to be told that the ref meant to blow the whistle sooner than he actually did. This is a subjective rule, and cannot be over turned by the league. It is a ridiculous way to run a professional sport, and players never actually know when a play is over because of it.

It does however, lead to the easy joke: Whether or not they intended to blow, they did.

Why it sucks even more: it has cost teams games. It is difficult to pin an entire game on one call, but more times than not, when intent to blow is involved, it winds up costing someone a game. That can't happen.

The Trapezoid (from previous post):

Put into place to prevent puck handling goalies from ending a forecheck before it started, this rule has not increased scoring, nor scoring chances. What it has done has made for more boarding calls as players charge in for a puck that normally would have been played away by a goalie. The check on Clayton Stoner by Curtis Glencross is a prime example.

A dumped in puck should not result in players injuring each other, and the removal of the trapezoid would likely remove at least some of the chances for injury. The number of goalies who excel at playing the puck is small, and making a rule such as this to defeat such a small sample is over reaction.

Besides... how many times have you seen the call get made?

Not much else to say here. It is, quite simply, a rule put into place as an over reaction to Martin Brodeur being too good at what he does. I wonder if the NHL would have ever painted a blue section in the slot so Pavel Datsyuk couldn't do what he does best.

In other words, would the NHL ever create a rule to prevent a goal scorer from scoring too many goals? Then why create a rule preventing a goalie from stopping too many?

*Offer subject to reality check. If you believe the sky to be green, and grass to be purple, then this offer can actually happen. If however, you are in this reality, it is not real.

Your turn Wilderness, cast your vote, and make your case in the comment section.