When I was listening to a Sirius NHL broadcast this morning, as they were going through the recap and highlights, they mentioned that a player had gotten a goal that was marked unassisted, as he got his own rebound off the goal post and subsequently scored. (I believe it was Kyle Clifford of the Kings vs the Vegas Golden Nights on 2/27/18, but unsure.)

They were surprised that it was recorded unassisted, and as I understand the rules of hockey, if a player gets his own rebound from a shot blocked by the goalie and scores, the assist(s) go to the last one or two players to touch the puck in a contributing manner.

I looked at some assist rules and clarifications on the web, but I can't find anything that would suggest that should have been an unassisted goal. Is there a case for this, or was the recording of an unassisted goal in error?

1 Answer 1


You have the right idea of an assist. Assists "reset" whenever the other team gains control, meaning that they have the puck on their stick and under control. Rebounds off a player or goalie and shots off the post do not reset assists.

On issue might be that you were listening to the radio guys so you couldn't actually see the goal. If you look here, you can click the video player and watch both Kings unassisted goals. In both instances, the Kings player (in white) gains control of the puck directly from the Golden Knights players (in dark), and scores without anyone on his team touching it.

Maybe the radio guys saw it wrong, or it was one of the goals with assists that was corrected after the fact (in the NHL, once the puck drops following a decision the decision is final as far as goal/no goal, but they can adjust who scored it and who got assists at will).

In fact, the Knights' first goal by Karlsson looks exactly as you described it. It may have originally been listed as "unassisted", but as you can see in the box score, is is now listed as assisted from Marchessault and Smith.

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