Coyotes netminder Mike Smith thinks the NHL should take a cue from the NFL and do more to protect goalies.
“They really solidified that in football when they brought in the rule of roughing the passer, and it’s a huge penalty for your team when that happens,” Smith said, per azcentral. “I personally don’t think the penalty is severe enough for a goaltender interference call.”
Goalies that have suffered injuries upon being bowled over by hard-charging skaters — like, say, Montreal’s Carey Price — might agree.
If the sole goal is to better protect the players, Smith may be onto something.
That being said, does the NFL only protect quarterbacks (and receivers, for that matter) for the good of the players’ health? Or, is there another reason for it? Like, more points being scored.
Follow-up question: would protecting goalies through tougher interference penalties increase scoring? Because we’d argue it would do the opposite, by making skaters more hesitant to crash the crease.
Not that goalies shouldn’t be protected, but obviously there are potential consequences to any rule change that need to be considered.