GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP/TSN.ca) - "The Great One" was watching from above in his first game as a National Hockey League coach on Friday night. What he saw was a 3-2 victory for the Phoenix Coyotes dampened by an injury to starting goalie Brian Boucher after the game was over.
Each exhibition game is followed by a one-on-one shootout to show fans what will be done in tie games under the new system. On the first attempt by the Wild, Boucher injured his right groin moving to block Peter Olvecky's shot and had to be helped from the ice. The severity of the injury wasn't known, but it didn't look good.
"I don't even know what to say. I've never seen anything like that," Gretzky said. "The guy played really well, was maybe our best player in the game, and to take an injury in that kind of scenario is just not good."
Article goes on to say that Boucher will not play aginst the Kings on Tuesday....
It was apparently a 3-2 regulation win, so, yeah, the shootout was unnecessary and there only because of Bettman's decision (which I think is a good one). I agree that playing Boucher in the shootout doesn't seem bright, especially since Phoenix had already won at that point, but perhaps the goalie that ends the game has to play the shootout; I don't know.