NHL Penalty Shot: Changes Coming Soon?

November 17th, 2009 by Jason Lempert Leave a reply »
I don't usually write about hockey, but I was watching a game the other night and one of the commentators made a rather interesting point.

While on the powerplay, a player on one of the teams (I fail to remember which teams were playing) was tripped up on a breakaway.  A penalty shot was immediately called for.

But why not let the team about to have the penalty shot choose between taking the shot or having the defensive team lose a man to the sin bin?

Think about it.

For the sake of example, imagine a game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Washington Capitals (see picture above).  Now let's say that while on the powerplay, Mats Sundin (still a Leaf for this example) is hooked or tripped up on a breakaway. A penalty shot is called. But what if the Leafs would prefer to have a 2-man advantage for a lengthy period of time? Shouldn't that be an option for them, rather than being forced to have a player take a one-time penalty shot?

Or, imagine the tables were turned. What if the Capitals, on the penalty kill, have a player hooked on a breakaway?  They might prefer to send the penalized player to the box and crea ...

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