Goaltender interference becoming more frequent

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Goaltender interference becoming more frequent

If it feels like NHL referees have started engaging in a lot more conferences after goals over the last few weeks, its not your imagination at work.

For the Boston Bruins there have been extended discussions about potential goaltender interference after goals in each of their last two games, and in each case the call ended up benefitting the Black and Gold. In Sundays win over the Anaheim Ducks a Matt Beleskey game-tying goal in the third period was wiped out because the refs ruled that Andrew Cogliano was in the crease interfering with Marty Turcos ability to square up and play the shot.

It ended up being the turning point in the game and turned Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau into a red-faced, expletive-tossing madman on the Anaheim bench and according to former NHL hockey referee Kerry Fraser its a new directive from the NHL GMs to call some instances of goaltender interference much more closely.

The mandate from the NHL general managers reads as follows after being agreed upon during the GM Meetings held in Florida last month:

Following the scoring of a goal where there was traffic and action in the area of the crease and goalie interference may come into play all four officials are to come together in the referee's crease. Once in the crease, the team is to communicate all possible information in determining the validity of the goal. The down low ref is still to make a goal or no goal signal on the play and then meet with his colleagues if there was contact and action involving the goalie to discuss the play.

In a unique scenario where a goal is scored and a good goal is signaled, but no penalty was signaled and upon discussion, the linesman is 100 certain that the goalie was interfered with in some way, in the blue paint, the goal is disallowed but no penalty is assessed.

It did appear that Cogliano arrived in the crease and set up camp without any movement -- long before the shot and interfered with Turcos ability to play the shot, and it was the perfect example of the new enforcement expected from NHL referees. Interestingly enough there was another lengthy conference after Bostons game-winning goal in the third period on Tuesday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning when Benoit Pouliot fired home a shot from the slot while Chris Kelly battled for position in front of the net.

Kelly was bumped around by defenders at ended up in the crease, but it didnt appear the center set up in front of Dwayne Roloson before the shot arrived. The goal was allowed to stand after a lengthy conference, and the Bruins ended up adding two more goals in the final period to pull away from the Lightning.

Two good examples of the new enforcement of goaltender interference and both of them arriving in short order for the Bruins. While the Bs players dont expect there will be a conference after every goal, they certainly have taken notice of the renewed attention to the action in and around the crease during goals. The fact the refs are willing to potentially look at and disallow pivotal goals in the third period of games tells you that its an issue theyre taking seriously.

Unlike the goal in Anaheim that was overturned I was with the defenseman battling for position. I wasnt on my own. It seems like the get the proper calls most of the time. It has happened in the last two games but I dont think it has happened too many times before, said Kelly. The refs want to give the goalies the best opportunities to save the puck. They dont want someone all over the goalie when he is trying to make the save. Thats not fair. If it is a battle in front of the goalie then thats fine for a goal to count.

Kelly appears to be correct in his assessment and theres little doubt this new mandate to call goalie interference is something well be seeing a lot of for the rest of the regular season and playoffs given the refs actions in the last two Bs games.

What makes a good manager? Rangers GM Jon Daniels explains

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What makes a good manager? Rangers GM Jon Daniels explains

Across the way from John Farrell in the Rangers dugout this series is a manager who was voted the American League’s best in his first year at the helm, 2015.

Jeff Banister is one of three full-time skippers Rangers president Jon Daniels has had in his time running the Rangers.

Much has been made about how Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski views the manager’s job: that in-game management isn’t the most important, but running the clubhouse is.

How does another top baseball exec look at it? Daniels explained on the CSNNE Baseball Show podcast.

“I think manager’s an enormous role,” Daniels said. “Huge importance, I don’t buy into any of the sort of snarky commentary. … What I think sometimes gets a little blown out of proportions, at times whether it’s lineup construction, some of those — the in-game stuff, bullpen management’s very real. 

“Certainly the knowledge of the game is big. I think the ability to teach the game is big. But the No. 1 separator, in my opinion, is managing people. It’s really the word ‘manager.’ Helping to mold the culture in the clubhouse. Getting everybody on the same page. Young players, older players, everybody’s got different self-interests and to be able to get all those unique self-interests enough on the same page for a common goal while representing the club publicly, with the media, with the fans, and doing it under a pretty intense spotlight — I think that’s the biggest piece. Probably the hardest to truly evaluate unless you’re like, in the clubhouse or around the clubhouse on a daily basis and have a sense for who’s good at it, who’s not. That for me is like where guys really separate themselves.”

Asked if he’s ever surprised by player sensitivity, Daniels underscored what stage of life most ballplayers are in.

“Everybody’s different, right?” Daniels said. “So everyone has different insecurities, everyone has different level of ego, grown up in different circumstances. At the end of the day everybody wants a few basic things. You want to be like kind of communicated on a pretty forthright, direct way. You want to be treated with respect. Some guys can handle a little more criticism than others. 

“Some guys can handle a little more criticism from their peers than others can. I think that’s a manager’s job, to understand kind of the different approaches. Players, the guys are in their 20s. Think about where you were when you were first out of college … a few years off that, and your maturity level and really your lack of life experience in a lot of ways. And, kind of like evaluate under those circumstances: you’re going to be somewhat sensitive when you’re in that time period in your life.”

How well a manager handles a clubhouse isn’t something the Rangers, at least, have tried to quantify.

“More anecdotal for me. There may be ways,” Daniels said. “I haven’t really been part of that. If there is [a way] we haven’t figured it out, and we haven’t really tried to do, to be honest with you.”

For the full interview, listen to the podcast below

Brown (hip) and Johnson (shoulder) will play in Game 5

Brown (hip) and Johnson (shoulder) will play in Game 5

BOSTON – The Boston Celtics are far from being healthy heading into tonight’s must-win Game 5, but they will have all of their players available with the exception of Isaiah Thomas (hip).

Celtics rookie Jaylen Brown (right hip) was questionable heading into tonight’s game, but he told CSNNE.com earlier that he was planning to give it a go tonight.

Boston head coach Brad Stevens confirmed later on that the 6-foot-7 rookie would in fact play tonight.

His presence tonight is one of the many keys to Boston’s efforts to keep their season alive.

They trail Cleveland 3-1 in the best-of-seven series, with a loss tonight ending their season and with that, sending the Cavaliers to the NBA Finals for the third straight season.

Boston’s Amir Johnson (right shoulder) did not play in Game 4, but will be in uniform and available to play tonight. Stevens said the 6-foot-9 veteran was healthy enough to play in Game 4 but Stevens elected to keep him out of the game because he wanted Johnson to have more than one day to rest his shoulder before potentially playing him again.

In other injury-related news, Stevens confirmed comments made earlier in the day by Danny Ainge regarding Isaiah Thomas’ right hip injury which led to the Celtics shutting him down for the playoffs after the injury proved to be too much for him to play through at halftime of Boston’s Game 2 loss.

Speaking during 98.5 the Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich show, Ainge said there was “a lot” of inflammation around the affected joint on Thomas’ right hip.

“It had gotten worse from the MRI’s he had before,” said Ainge who added that it would have been “irresponsible to allow him to play anymore.”

Said Stevens: “It sounds to me like the course of action right now … is let the inflammation go down a little bit.”

Ainge said earlier that because of the inflammation, it will likely be at least a couple weeks before Thomas and the Celtics will know if he will require surgery or whether another form of treatment will be needed.

Because of that uncertainty, Ainge stressed that Thomas would not return to play in this series even if it were closer.

“No. No way. He’s done (for the season),” Ainge said.