NHL sticking with emergency goaltending rule after wild scene in Toronto

BOCA RATON, FLA.—NHL general managers will not make any changes to the league’s emergency goaltending procedure.

On the first day of NHL GM meetings Monday, the topic was at the top of the agenda in the aftermath of an incident last month in Toronto.

David Ayres, a 42-year-old Zamboni driver and the operations manager of a Toronto arena, had to come into a game for Carolina in the second period after the Hurricanes’ two goalies got hurt against the Maple Leafs. Ayres, who has been a goaltender at practice for the Maple Leafs and their American Hockey League affiliate, ended up earning the win as Carolina beat Toronto 6-3.

The current rule of each arena making an emergency goalie available for a game stemmed from a 2015 incident in Florida that almost caused an assistant coach to put on the pads and play. An emergency goalie has only been required to play twice — Ayres and Scott Foster for Chicago in 2018.

Ayres donated the stick from his win to the Hockey Hall of Fame last week.

The resident of Bowmanville, Ont., has been interviewed dozens of times, appeared on “Today” and “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” in the United States, and was a guest of the Hurricanes along with his wife at their game last week in Raleigh, N.C.

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— With files from The Associated Press

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