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NHL ref: ‘I hate’ the puck-over-glass penalty

Paul Devorski

We don’t hear from NHL officials much, so when one does provide an opinion for public consumption, we pay attention.

Especially when one of them says he can’t stand one of the rules in the rulebook.

For veteran referee Paul Devorski, it’s the minor penalty for shooting the puck over the glass in the defensive zone that drives him nuts.

“I hate it,” Devorski told Sportsnet’s Mark Spector. “Only because...we all knew when a guy was tired and he threw the puck over the glass. Now...a guy just tries to put it off the glass, and he’s got it a little too high, and sure as hell he gets a penalty.

“I don’t like calling it, but I don’t have any say in the matter.”

Devorski isn’t alone in disliking the rule that’s been such a hot topic of discussion during the 2013 playoffs.

But the alternatives present other problems. If there’s no penalty, more pucks will go flying over the glass, and you could argue that’s unfair to the attacking team.

And if it’s left to the referees to decide intent, well, you can imagine the arguments there.