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One Writer Gets Sent to the Penalty Box

May 09, 1998

On behalf of all King fans in Los Angeles who actually know the game, I would like to respond to a letter written by Bob Nicolai of Calabasas in the May 2 issue. Mr. Nicolai states that the referee made the correct call and says, "Jamie Storr is outside the crease and tries to knock Geoff Courtnall off the puck, and for his trouble he got bumped into the net. Storr is now fair game since he is outside his crease."

First of all, I was just wondering if Mr. Nicolai has ever actually seen a hockey game. If he has, he would know that even though Storr is outside his crease he is not fair game to be hit. Goalies are now protected in the NHL. They have been for several years.

Second, Courtnall ran him over intentionally. He made no effort to get out of Storr's way.

Finally, [King defenseman Sean] O'Donnell didn't deserve a five-minute penalty, Bob, no matter how you look at it. He was protecting his goaltender, which he has to do.

Maybe before you analyze hockey games, Mr. Nicolai, you should learn the rules.

MIKE CARLIN, Los Angeles

*

In regard to Mr. Nicolai's letter: I can only presume from your point of view that you are in training to become an NHL official. Best of luck to you.

BILL PIENIASZEK, Long Beach

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