In a National League A playoff game in Saturday, Cedric Botter of Fribourg-Gottéron fired a shot at the EHC Biel net and the puck went in.
OK, not all of the puck went in. Just most of it.
In a wild scene that league officials said they’d never witnessed before, the hockey puck split in two pieces when it connected with the left post, sending a huge chunk of it behind netminder Reto Berra. The rest of it rebounded off of Berra’s back and into the crease, where he swatted it away with his paddle.
So a goal was scored and the puck was saved at the same moment. And that, friends, is how you get rips in the fabric of the space/time continuum ...
The real question, of course: Did the goal count?
Watch the play via Swiss Habs, and make the call:
According to Grégory Beaud of 20Minutes.ch, a Swiss sports site: No, the goal did not count.
At the 35th minute, Cédric Botter thought he had scored the 5-0. After consulting the video referee canceled the success.
The reason? The puck was smashed on the pole and only half of the washer has finished at the bottom of the goal. "I've never seen anything like it," was the referee Stéphane Rochette laughed. This game is totally unusual has fortunately had only minor consequences. "They are heroes"
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a puck split in half on a shot off the iron. Please recall the scene between the USHL Sioux City Musketeers and Sioux Falls Stampede in which the puck split on a hard shot from defenseman Andrew Prochno. Neither half entered the net, however.
Fribourg-Gottéron won the freaky Swiss playoff game, 6-1, and advanced to the LNA semifinals. Good thing they had a rather healthy cushion and the split-puck goal wasn’t a factor. Because – and this is just a hunch – we imagine there’s nothing in the rulebook that officially covers this. Unless it's some variation of the "entire puck must cross the goal line" bit.
(We are, however, extremely disappointed that when the puck splits in half in Switzerland chocolate doesn’t spill out.)
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