Why Lightning’s goal counted after Tuukka Rask’s blade fell out

Tuukka Rask is left furious after his skate blade breaks and Mikhail Sergachev scores shortly after. Despite his complaints to the referee the goal would stand.

Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask was left rather helpless when his left skate blade fell out of his boot during the second period of Game 1 against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.

Playing hockey can be pretty tough when you can’t push off the ice with one of your skates, and Rask found that out first-hand at a terrible time, with the Lightning on a power play.

Tampa’s Mikhail Sergachev eventually scored, with his low point shot getting past a grounded Rask, who could only offer a meagre save attempt with his blocker.

The Finnish netminder had been trying to grab the attention of the on-ice officials, attempting to get a stoppage that never came, and the 31-year-old threw quite a fit (which included literally throwing the blade across the ice) when play was allowed to continue.

The NHL’s public relations account tweeted this explanation as to why the play was not blown dead.

Skate blades have come loose before during play, often resulting in a helpless player hilariously trying to make his way to the bench. Play has always been allowed to continue.

The fact that this happened to a goalie had no effect on how officials were supposed to proceed, and indeed the right call was made. The NHL’s rulebook states that “play shall not be stopped nor the game delayed by reasons of adjustments to clothing, equipment, skates or sticks.”

The goal brought the Lightning within one goal of the Bruins, who would eventually take over in the third period anyway, earning a road win and a 1-0 lead in their second-round series.

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