Tag: proposed rule changes

Los Angeles Kings v Phoenix Coyotes

GMs balk at proposed removal of trapezoid


Although Sharks GM Doug Wilson obtained “more support” for his proposal to eliminate the trapezoid, the potential rule change hit a road block during the GM Meetings on Tuesday. The GMs liked the idea of hybrid icing, but the removal of the trapezoid and a separate proposal to reinstate the red line were met with resistance.

“I think it’s a sense that the game is in great shape right now,” Leafs GM Brian Burke said. “The product we have put on the ice is the best product we have put on the ice in terms of speed. I think it’s a great broadcast product. And I think there is a strong sense that this thing is working right now, let’s leave it alone and see where it goes.”

Supporters of the trapezoid feel that it improves the flow of game, but some GMs argue that defensemen are taking needless hits as a result. This might not be the last time the removal of the trapezoid is brought up, but it looks like it’ll still be there in 2012-13.

GMs recommend hybrid icing

Pierre Gauthier

The hybrid icing rule took another step towards being a part of the NHL when the GMs agreed to recommend it to the Competitions Committee in June. As we mentioned yesterday, USA Hockey has a video explaining the hybrid icing rule.

It’s worth noting that the GMs will try to eliminate the gray zones they think exists in the rule’s United States Hockey League and NCAA format before bringing it to the Committee.

“It’s easy to have these ideas and try to push them forward, but when it comes time to actually write up the rules and think of all the situations and all the scenarios that could happen on the ice, making it clear enough so that we can give our on-ice officials the proper direction, there is a lot of work to do,” Canadiens GM Pierre Gauthier said. “It’s going to go forward as a recommendation, but there is some cleaning up as to how exactly it is going to work and what directives we’re going to give.”

At least two-thirds of the Competitions Committee must vote in favor of it before it can be sent to the Board of Governors. From there, the Board of Governors can chose to ratify it for next season.

RDO Camp: Teams would be forced to carry puck out of the zone on delayed penalty


One of the interesting rules that the league’s brass and general managers took a look at today was the Delayed Penalty Rule. The added wrinkle would require a team to not only gain possession of the puck, but to also get the puck out of their own zone before the referee blows the play dead. Think of all of those tense moments when fans are yelling for the team to just touch the puck; now they’d be yelling to not only touch the puck, but get possession, and completely clear the puck.

The rationale straight from the league’s RDO release:

“The extra time it will take a team to clear their zone, will be more time the non-offending team will have with an extra attacker which will provide more offense.”

Anyone who has followed hockey knows the uneasy feeling during the anxious few seconds when a team is desperately trying to touch the puck on a delayed penalty. Take that tense feeling and multiply it by a few seconds—maybe even a full minute. It creates yet another disadvantage for a team that has been penalized which would create a) more scoring and b) further dissuade teams from taking penalties. Oilers GM Steve Tambellini talked to Dan Rosen of NHL.com about the new rule:

“You recognize the onus is on the player to get the puck out before they can blow the whistle. The play is not over. You have to work to earn the right to get the whistle. I didn’t mind that.”


“It also creates fatigue. Say you’re playing Detroit and they’ve been in the zone for a minute and a half, then you take a penalty and now you have to get it out of the zone. You’ll have a much greater chance for a scoring opportunity.”

The rule falls right in line with most of the other prospective rules: reduce the number of whistles and increase scoring. Like so many other rules, this is one that will probably take a little time for the league to consider, so don’t expect it to make an appearance for the upcoming season. But like last year, the rules that were being evaluated can make reappearance the next year when GMs have a better idea of what to expect and have had a year to think about any implications. Rules that start to gain traction this year could be up for real debate for the 2012-13 season. It sounds like most of the people involved liked the new twist on the delayed penalty—the next step will be to see just how vocal the proponents are over the coming months.

For one, this possible rule change sounds like it has some potential.

5 interesting rules the NHL will test at the R&D Camp

2010 NHL Research, Development and Orientation Camp

For the second year in a row, Brendan Shanahan and his cohorts at the NHL league office will play with their own personal mad-science lab in Toronto next week. The league plans on testing out rules that have no chance of ever passing, rules that already should be in the league, and rules that are being tested just to appease a certain general manager in the area. Some of the rules are subtle changes that could have big-time effects on the game if implemented. Then there are other changes that will stick out like John Scott at a midget convention. Hopefully there won’t be any images like this one from last year’s R&D camp. That thing never had a chance.

James Mirtle over at The Globe and Mail took a look at some of the potential rule changes that caught his attention. In the same spirit, here are five of the rule changes that caught our eye:

1. Offside variation (offending team can’t change and face-off in its end zone)
Fans reactions to the dreaded offside call on a 3-2 odd-man rush would go from “how hard is it to stay onside” to the more dire “if they score on this faceoff, I’m going down to the locker room after the game to yell at so-and-so.” It’s understandable for the punitive measures taken to discourage icing, but this seems like an extreme measure to eliminate a play that is often caused by over-aggressiveness. If anything, this could discourage speed in the neutral zone and cause players to be more cautious when they’re on the attack. Isn’t that the exact opposite of what the league has been trying to promote?

2. ‘Hybrid’ icing
They might as well keep testing this rule until the GMs have the good sense of passing it into law. It’s clear that with the increased speed of today’s game (without obstruction) and without the help of goaltenders handling the puck, the most routine icing play has become dangerous for the defenseman chasing the loose puck. Watching international events that employ no-touch icing shows that there’s still a time and place for the end-zone chase. It’s frustrating to watch when an offensive player is clearly going to get to the puck first only to have the play blown dead. Hybrid icing brings the best of both worlds: it allows players to chase the puck, but protects defensemen in a vulnerable position.

3. Delayed penalty variation (offending team must exit zone in possession of puck to stop play)
This is a rule that has a ton of potential. The league has tried to implement rules that the offending team has had to control the puck (as opposed to just touching the puck) in recent years, but this takes the rule to the next level. It further rewards a team for pressuring their opponent, while not letting the offending team off the hook by simply grabbing the puck. Now, they’d have to do something with it. Depending how this rule is implemented in the R&D camp, it could be something the GMs take a strong look at down the road. One tweak might simply require the offending team to clear the zone—not necessarily with possession. Requiring a team to gain possession and skate the puck out of the zone might be asking a little too much. Firing it past the blue line should be enough.

4. Shallow-back nets
This is one of those rules that doesn’t seem like a big deal until you see it implemented on the ice. Last season, this was one of the more surprising suggestions because of the multiple advantages it creates for the offensive team in the attacking zone. Obviously, shallower nets allow for more space behind the net; for players who are always looking for time and space, any little bit helps. But surprisingly, it was the passing from behind the net that struck me as the biggest advantage to spring from the shallow nets. Without as much net obstructing play, there are better/different passing angles for creative passers to exploit from Gretzky’s Office. Back door plays and plays that go against the grain open up like never before.

5. All penalties to be served in their entirety
Talk about opening Pandora’s Box. Imagine a world where every 2-minute minor penalty is treated like a 5-minute major. The opposition can score as many times as possible; only after two minutes will the offending player finally be released from the box. Remember all of those questionable calls in the playoffs with accusations of diving? With so much more on the line, there’s a good chance diving would increase in direct proportion to scoring output. What about when a team takes a 2-minute penalty when they’re already on the penalty kill? Does that mean the team can score on the 2-man advantage as many times as possible? A simple delay of game call, or worse yet, a blown call on a nothing play, could change the entire complexion of any given game. If anything, the officials should be the ones who shoot this rule down.

What rules are you looking forward to seeing this summer? More importantly, which rules would you like to see implemented in the next few years? Let us know in the comments.

Panthers GM Dale Tallon will propose coaches challenge during GM meetings

Dale Tallon

It’s always easier to get involved in a cause if something affected you directly. You’ll see this happen often with celebrities; they will sometimes get involved in charitable efforts when their children or other loved ones suffer from a disease.

By that train of thought, it’s not shocking that Florida Panthers GM Dale Tallon is leading the charge to give NHL coaches the right to challenge one call per game (if they still have a timeout). After all, Tallon’s team would have benefited from such a rule after Toronto Maple Leafs forward Colton Orr more or less made a goal happen because he interfered with Panthers goalie Scott Clemmensen.

TSN’s Darren Dreger reports that the topic will be on the agenda for Tuesday’s general meetings and that Tallon sent the information to NHL Senior VP and Director of Hockey Operations Colin Campbell. Dreger also shared the specifics of Tallon’s proposed rule change.

The introductory criteria for Tallon’s proposal for a coach’s challenge are as follows:

> Applies only to goal-related plays

> Challenge must be issued within prescribed time limit

> Team must have timeout left to issue challenge

> Unsuccessful challenge results in loss of timeout

> Successful challenge results in no loss of timeout

> One challenge per team per game

Addressing the coach’s challenge system is something we took a look at last week and hey, look at that, they want to check into it further.

Seems pretty straightforward and reasonable, right? Much like in the NFL, an unsuccessful challenge will cost a team a timeout, which means that the new rule wouldn’t really add that much time to a contest in most cases. Either a challenge will be successful (and therefore worth the time spent) or it won’t and there will be one less available break in the action.

One bonus is that a coach cannot challenge a play as frivolously as an NFL one would; they only get one opportunity as opposed to two chances like their pigskin counterparts. Let’s not forget that NHL teams only get one timeout per game, too, so losing that could be a big blow for teams that commit a poorly timed icing or need to draw up a play late in a game.

What do you think? Should coaches be allowed to challenge specific plays? Let us know in the comments.