(Source: Sportsnet.ca) – “From now on, a failed offside challenge will result in a two-minute penalty against the club asking for the review. It’s a potentially powerful infraction.

Before I even respond to this new rule I want you take a look at this:

Would you say, looking at that picture, that Zach Parise got back to the blue line and tagged up to get onside? Or would you say he didn’t get to the blue line to tag up and was offside? Because last season gainfully employed well-paid professional NHL officials looked at that picture and could not conclusively determine if Zach Parise got back to the blue line to tag up to be onside or was offside. That is not a joke. They couldn’t conclusively tell. Those are their words, not mine. So the Minnesota Wild’s goal on this play stood as a good goal.

Today going forward, the team that challenged what my two year old daughter could even point to and conclusively say “offside” to would be penalized.

What a world we live in, huh?

This is classic NHL. Classic. “Yes, our offside review is flawed. Yes, we don’t have the technology to often get it right. Yes, we get it wrong a lot. But we are not changing. We can’t be seen as wrong. So we’re going to add a penalty to the review and pretend it’s not broken to make it your fault, not ours. We are now daring you to challenge our stupidity”. Hilarious. Classic out if touch NHL. Classic board room mentality.

It’d be one thing if the NHL consistently got the reviews right. But they don’t. Most you can’t even tell. Often it feels like they’re guessing. And many that are clear one way or the other are called the opposite.

The most hilarious part about this new penalty for a failed offside challenge is people with moderately functioning brains actually think this will deter or force coaches to really think about whether or not to challenge an offside. That it’ll speed up the game. You know what speeds up the game? Getting rid of the broken challenge altogether.

You heard it here first, you heard it here now; no NHL coach is going to be deterred, or not challenge an offside, because of a delay of game penalty. If they think a play was offside they’re going to challenge it. End of story. Coaches are not scared of a stupid new rule in a broken review process. They’ll leave it in the reviewers hands, as it’s often a coin toss anyway, and if they feel it’s the right decision to make they’re making it and teams will happily live with their decision.

Aside from the instigator rule that protects problem players and cheap shot artists the offsides review might be the dumbest thing in the history of rules in the NHL because it was never set up to be consistently accurate and successful. And now it just got dumber.

I can’t wait to write about a thousand examples of this when it undoubtedly happens over and over all season. The league can’t get out of it’s own way.

So stock up on alcohol and Pepto, folks because botched reviews are coming and your team is going to pay for the incompetence. It’s about to get real stupid in here.

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