1999 Stanley Cup Brett Hull Goal Explanation





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Published on Jan 28, 2009

1999 NHL Rulebook - Rule 78-b: "Unless the puck is in the goal crease area, a player of the attacking side not possessing the puck may not stand in the goal crease. If the puck should enter the net while such conditions prevail, the goal shall not be allowed. If an attacking player has physically interfered with the goalkeeper prior to or during the scoring of a goal...the goal will be disallowed and a penalty for goaltender interference will be assessed."


This will hopefully allow people to finally put this issue to bed since I'm sick of hearing the whining about it from many Sabres fans I know. The rule was NOT "If your foot is in the crease it's no goal." If a player had possession of the puck when it went in, he could be in the crease. Since he kicked it to himself prior to putting his skate in the crease, he was allowed to shoot and score legally.

I'll admit that the crease rule was stupid (it did screw the Stars several times that season and playoffs as well), but why most Sabres fans think they got screwed is for the wrong reasons. Obviously his foot was in the crease, anyone can see that, but that wasn't the rule despite what most Sabre followers from then will tell you. Also when Dallas won the cup you could see all 4 refs gather in front of the goal judge box to make sure it was legal so it wasn't an excuse the NHL made after the fact like some conspiracy nuts have said. This clip was from that night minutes after the game and cup presentation ceremony when Referee Manager Bryan Lewis was interviewed to explain why it was a goal.

Comment all you want on how this is "B.S" or whatever. I could care less. You didn't get screwed here, and whether or not you were screwed the next year on the goal through the net or the Rangers series in 2007, get over it. I didn't hear Sabre's fans complaining during Game 1 when Dallas was being hooked, tripped, and interfered with at every turn with no calls. Every other team in the league gets screwed over just about the same amount since refs are humans, other teams just do less whining about it.

Here's Bettman saying it was a goal 8 years later too.


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