BY BOB HOLT
For all of the highlights that former New Jersey Devils goaltending great Martin Brodeur had during his career, the most noteworthy may be that the game changed because of him.
Literally. Brodeur is officially retiring from the National Hockey League after 22 years on Thursday.
An Associated Press story in The Boston Globe reported that Brodeur would make the announcement at a news conference before the St. Louis Blues game on Thursday. Brodeur signed with the Blues in December, and recorded his last victory on Dec.29.
But the NHL actually changed one of its rules before the 2005-06 season because of Brodeur’s puck handling ability. According to devils.nhl.com, the rule states that a goaltender is not allowed to play the puck outside of the blue trapezoid area behind the goal. Goaltenders are essentially forbidden to handle the puck in the corners, forcing a defenseman to come back into his own zone to make a play.