ShareThis Page
Pulling the goalie in the second period? Penguins coach Mike Sullivan has considered it | TribLIVE.com
Penguins/NHL

Pulling the goalie in the second period? Penguins coach Mike Sullivan has considered it

Jonathan Bombulie
| Saturday, February 23, 2019 6:41 p.m
793993_web1_792225-3d0095bce7d0483d954def830cb8c22e
AP
Workers install the protective glass as they stand upon the ice covered by an insulated tarp ahead of the NHL Stadium Series game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers.

PHILADELPHIA – When the NHL announced Saturday afternoon that the Stadium Series game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers would be played as scheduled, the press release contained a long list of contingencies.

The one with the greatest potential impact on the outcome of the game was straight out of baseball’s rulebook. If the game were to be rained out, the result would be official if two periods had been completed.

This created an obvious conundrum for the coaches.

“You’re not really given the opportunity, and this is for either team, if it’s a close game, to be able to pull your goalie to tie it up. That’s kind of a unique situation, but that’s the cards we’re dealt with,” Philadelphia’s Scott Gordon said.

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said he and his coaching staff had discussed whether they would pull their goalie if they trailed late in the second period and the rain was coming down hard.

“We’ve talked about that, but we’re not sure we’re going to know they’re going to call the game at that particular point,” Sullivan said. “If we know and if we have that information and they are going to call the game after two periods and that would constitute a game, then we would consider it for sure.”

A game deemed official after two periods is certainly a rarity in hockey, but Penguins winger Zach Aston-Reese had played in one before.

When he was a senior at Northeastern, a Zamboni broke down and damaged the ice surface to the point where a game against Notre Dame couldn’t continue. It was ruled a 0-0 tie.

“It ended up kind of screwing up Notre Dame’s season,” Aston-Reese said. “They probably would have beat us and won the Hockey East title.”

While coaches were preparing for the various contingencies, Aston-Reese said it’s best for players not to worry much about them.

“You can’t have that kind of weighing on your head,” Aston-Reese said. “You have to expect the game to be played at the regular time and to finish out.”

Follow the Pittsburgh Penguins all season long.

Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jonathan by email at jbombulie@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

Categories: Sports | Penguins
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.