Fans in shock after finding out about rare NHL rule that could’ve lost the Wild a point, even the players were unaware of it

The Minnesota Wild need every point they can take to have a shot at reaching the playoffs.

So when their game vs. the Nashville Predators went into overtime Sunday, head coach John Hynes did what few other coaches in the NHL have dared before.

There’s no secret about just how desperate the Wild are for every point at the moment, and Hynes proved it by pulling goalie Marc-Andre Fleury in overtime for an extra attacker to get a four-on-three advantage.

It was a bold move for several reasons. Had the Predators, one of the teams the Wild are chasing for a playoff spot, gotten a hold of the puck, they wouldn’t just have secured the extra point. The Wild would also have lost the one point they already had won.

Few fans knew about the rule before Sunday’s game, and when experts and insiders made fans aware of it, they were almost in disbelief.

According to rule 84.2, the team ’that lose the game during the time in which the goalkeeper has been removed, would forfeit the automatic point gained in the tie at the end of regulation play, except if the goalkeeper has been removed at the call of a delayed penalty against the other team.’

It’s extremely rare to see a goalie get pulled during an OT, which led to fans’ confusion about the rule. The Wild managed to win, as Matt Boldy scored 20 seconds after Fleury took his seat on the bench. It was a bold move from Hynes that paid off big time.

”It’s not something that you do all the time,” Hynes said per The Athletic. “But I think in our position, we want to be aggressive, we want to get 2 points. We believe in our group and want to continue to fight to play meaningful games down the stretch and let the chips fall where they may. So I think in the situation we’re in, 1 point, no point, it’s not going to do us any good. We’ve got to get 2 points.”

But as it turned out, it wasn’t just fans that were unaware of the rule. Some of the Wild players were as well. Matt Boldly, who scored the game-winner, had no idea that they could’ve lost the point they had gained.

”Good thing we scored,” Boldy said, laughing.

SAINT PAUL, MN – MARCH 21: Marc-Andre Fleury #29 of the Minnesota Wild warms up prior to the game against the Vegas Golden Knights at the Xcel Energy Center on March 21, 2022 in Saint Paul, Minnesota. (Photo by Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images)

Marc-Andre Fleury didn’t know about the rule either, and he had a hilarious quote about it postgame.

”Ahhhh, that makes sense. Otherwise since you have the point you’d pull your goalie all the time,” he told Wild insider Michael Russo.

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