New Rules: Yay! Or Nay?

Colin Campbell, NHL Executive Vice President and Director of Hockey Operations, was interviewed regarding the new set of rules. Here is the

Q: How will the “hurry-up” face-off procedure work?

A: The line change procedure does not necessarily start the instant the whistle is blown to stop play. Once all is clear, the Visiting Team will have five seconds to change up to all five of its skaters. Players must move towards the face-off location quickly. Once the Referee in the neutral zone is satisfied that the Visiting Team is done with its player changes, he raises his arm, signaling that the Home Team now has eight seconds to make its player changes. The Referee then will lower his arm, indicating no more changes can be made. The Linesman then blows his whistle, indicating the face-off will be conducted in five seconds.

Q: What if teams don’t follow the procedures?

A: If a Team puts too many players on the ice or attempts to change after its time is up, players are sent back to the bench and a warning is issued to the team’s Coach. Once the warning is issued, further violation will result in a bench minor penalty for delay of game. If players are slow getting to the face-off location and are not on-side for the face-off following the five-second whistle by the Linesman, the players’ team is warned for the first violation. For the second violation, a bench minor penalty is assessed for delaying the game.

Q: What happens in the last two minutes of regulation time and in overtime?

A: The line change process will still be followed respecting the timelines, but players will be given reasonable time to set up for the face-off (e.g. no whistle by linesman signifying five seconds until puck drop). Teams making slow line changes or Teams attempting late changes are still subject to a bench minor penalty if they had been warned earlier in the game.

Q: What about the face-off itself?

A: Face-offs are a very important part of our game, and it is a priority that the integrity of the face-off be maintained, even with the new, faster line changes. So the centers must be properly positioned, with their sticks on the ice, within five seconds and all other players must be on-side and outside the circle.

Q: If they aren’t?

A: The only players who are supposed to be inside the circle are the centers who are facing off; the other players are supposed to be outside the circle, on the correct sides of the hash marks. If other players encroach into the circle, or if they enter the area between the hash marks, or if they make physical contact with an opponent, those are all violations. It’s also a violation if the center doesn’t have his stick on the ice in the white area inside the face-off dot.

For the first violation observed by any of the four officials on the ice, the offending team’s center is ejected. For the second violation during the same stoppage, the center is ejected and a bench minor penalty is assessed.

Q: Let’s move on to interference. First, what is the definition Referees will use for obstruction?

A: We want a forechecker to be able to pursue and pressure the puck. We want an Offenstive Team skater who isn’t carrying the puck to be able to get open for a pass or drive to the front of the net. We want to reward players who use the skill of skating.

Obstruction is any tactic by a player who tries to restrain or does restrain an opponent who is not in possession of the puck. Obstruction also occurs when a player physically prevents an opponent from moving freely in the direction he wishes to go.

A defending player can’t take one hand off his stick and use it to hold, pull, tug or grab the body or stick of an opponent. A defending player will be penalized if he uses his stick to impede an opponent unless he is skating in front of or beside the opponent and moving in the same direction.

Defending players need to know they cannot use their hands or their stick to impede an opposing player’s progress unless those defending players have legal body position. When you lose body position because you stopped skating, you’re in trouble. If you, as a Defending Team player, use your stick or your free hand to impede the progress of an Offensive Team player who does not have the puck, you will be penalized.

Similarly, a player chasing an opponent who is pursuing a loose puck cannot use his stick on that opponent and “slingshot” himself ahead of the skater he was pursuing.

Q: Are there other new rules for 2002-2003?

A: One new item is, if a team makes a goaltending change, it cannot delay the game unreasonably in doing so. Teams were trying to gain an unofficial time-out by changing the goalie and delaying while the goalie looked for his helmet or got a new stick or used some similar tactic. Now, if a team is going to make a change, the goalie must be ready to go into the net promptly. No extra time will be permitted, unless the new goalie is replacing a goaltender who has been injured.

Also, there will be a stricter standard regarding abuse of officials. Our Officials have a difficult job and they take a lot of heat. Almost every time an Official makes a call, one team likes it and the other team doesn’t. So if a player verbally abuses an Official in any way – even through such actions as slamming the door to the penalty box – the player will receive a minor penalty. If the player persists, he will receive an additional 10-minute misconduct penalty, and if he continues to abuse the Official, the player will be ejected.

Similarly, if a coach abuses an official, either verbally or through animated gestures, he will be assessed a bench minor penalty. If he persists, the coach will be ejected.

The bottom line: Abuse of an Official will result in a penalty to the Team, not just the player or Coach. This could put a Team down one player for four minutes or two players for two minutes each.

17 Responses to New Rules: Yay! Or Nay?

  1. mikster says:

    I think the 5 seconds rule is completely disastrous and the most idiotic idea. What do you expect though, it’s Campbell.

    Refs will use that rule of “abuse” to their advantage. Poor Fleury. Hell, i bet you that Holik and Kaspar will get more PIMs then they ever had.

    Why is it so complicated? 15 seconds was great! Why change that? Why not even let the fans give their opinion?

  2. garry1221 says:

    the 5 seconds may be a little quick, but it’ll speed the game up in a way, we hope,

    the abuse rule is going off the deep end, any bets on how many people fraser will get with that one this year?

  3. Tradedude says:

    5 SECONDS, WTF man, that is simply pothetic, 15 seconds, was awesome, anywhere from15-25 seconds is great, but 5 seconds, jeeezez, and that penalty shit, forget that, i hear that shit every year and do they do anything about it, NO, just more complaints, that’s all, if this were true, then big guys like laraques, brashear, worrell, man, i cant even imagine how many pim they will end up with, then there marchment, o BOY, wonder what will happen wit him and his cheapshots..

  4. saksfan says:

    Heh, the faceoff rule is gonna shave of a few more seconds off every game!! Woohoo…

  5. Tradedude says:

    is this stuff a rumor, or true?> like official rule (5 second rule)???????????/

  6. Aves21 says:

    I like the idea of moving the game faster and not letting teams delay, but this sounds way too complex.

  7. Rushing says:

    I have to agree with ya and disagree with ya.

    The 5 secs is a little too harsh ya might say. Come on now, that’s pushing it.

    But, if you yell at an Umpire you get tossed out of a game. If you go cursing at a ref in the NFL you get a flag thrown at ya so what’s the big deal about getting a couple for throwing a few words at a ref in the NHL? I certainly wouldn’t want some 6’3″ guy yelling his trap at me while I’m doing my job.

  8. edmontonrules says:

    I would like to know if slamming the penalty door was because Gilmour broke that whole sheet of glass? Does anybody know?

  9. BWbullies says:

    This will open the game up a little. It takes away that defensive strategy on the face offs. So teams will now have to try and adjust thier lines on the fly. I think there will be more scoring this year. Hitch was saying that you will be going more with your best lines rather then trying to counter act the other teams line.

  10. mikster says:

    Using inapporpriate verbal use, ok, but saying things like “that was a bad call”, and shake your head…..if someone gets a penalty for that, then it’s pathetic. I think this rule will get out of hand.

  11. mikster says:

    Speed up the game for sure, cause a lot of confusing to delay the game by both teams, for sure.

  12. mikster says:

    Probably….NHL refs are such wimps. I think they are the hockey players who got rejected. This is such a joke……

  13. PersuingHistory03 says:

    It was a combination of the two- He slammed the door, and that was considered Unsportsmanlike, the fact that it delayed the game by about 30 minutes didn’t help his case either…

  14. garry1221 says:

    i can see valid points to some of these rules, but also mixed in with the validity is STUPID penalties

    The hurry up face offs, ok, 5 seconds is a little quick, but they were looking to shave time off of games, however, giving a bench minor to a team after they’ve been warned…. gimme a break, how many players will get mixed signals and jump on the ice this season?…. lots…. how many men does that stupidly put in the box…..LOTS MORE THAN LOTS…. in other words, stupid rule, stupid penalty

    Last two minutes of regulation there’s no hurry up face off.. is i think what they’re saying….. then 1. y have the hurry up face off to begin with…. 2. teams that are slow in making line changes get penalized?…. this is insane…. so the last two minutes of the game, when everyone is tired, you’ll be penalized for moving like u feel…. sure… smart…. brilliant rule….. GIMME A BREAK… are ppl supposed to take these seriously….. better yet, are new fans gonna take this seriously……. oh wait…. this game gets less air time now that espn has cut it’s games….. so the number of new fans…( the ones that Bettman has wanted) will be drastically cut… not only from lack of games to watch, but over abundance of STUPID IDIOTIC penalties

    onto faceoffs… nothing in the article to argue with in terms of faceoff itself, but once again PENALTIES…. now a player gets a warning if he touches an opponent before puck drop….. and if it happens again he gets a penalty?…..WHAT THE HELL KINDA BS IS THAT??… i’ll agree, some of the pushing and shoving aint warranted, but damn, it’s a physical game, jostling for position is a part of it…. and now it’s a penalty?… STUPID FREAKING PENALTY

    ok, lets have a vote here… when will the insanity of the obstruction calls stop…. and will they ever really know what an obstruction call looks like? i mean, gimme a break, they said they’d get rid of diving and we still have dives registering 10.0 in the olympics

    the thing on goalies is ok, it’s reasonable, also will help to shorten time if a goalie change is made

    the official abuse thing?…. gimme a break, it’s one thing to yell in a refs face about a call, that’s a penalty no question, but now are players gonna be penalized for talking to the ref about it?….. seems to me refs have the upper hand here and could use it on any team they don’t like……. im gonna hate to see fraser now with this little bit of rule in his hands….

    all in all……. TOO MANY PENALTIES….. they want to make the game faster, yet they put 1000 new penalties into effect for various reasons, makes absolutely no sense, not to mention that 99 % of those penalties are some of the craziest things we’ve ever heard of….. that’s my take on this whole crazy list

  15. DaAvs says:

    I post this question to everyone. Hasn’t the bitching and moaning gone a little far against the refs? I mean it’s one thing to say something small, but then you have people taking 2 minutes to give their ‘case’ on why it shouldn’t be a penalty. I’d like to see that eliminated. I don’t mind some play saying “That’s ****ed up” But don’t give the story of your life. The overkill is on the penalty for the faceoffs. Granted time needs to improve. But two minutes after the first warning? Maybe they think with more penalties will come more power plays will become more points. Which will make the sport more enertaining. Who wouldn’t want to see their team with a lot of 5-4 time? So I say the abuse rule gives merit, but can be easily abused. But sometimes we need it.

  16. bones says:

    Detroit will be most affected by this 5 second rule, so I’m all for it!!!! lol

  17. aaron says:

    I don’t get you ppl. You piss and moan about how bad the game sucks, and how we need all these new rules, and then they implement the rules, and you piss and moan about how stupid they are?

    Hurry-up faceoffs: 15 seconds. NHL Hurry-up faceoffs: 5+5+8=18 seconds (the first five seconds is allowance time to get the play settled down).

    BTW, how the hell do you expect to enforce it if you don’t associate a penalty w/ it? Oh, we’re just going to tell the players to hurry up? This will also force coaches to be slightly more prepared and have their lines pre-determined. Which will end line matching, which is going to bump up offense.

    The no contact thing is in effect anyway, just poorly enforced. All I see here is enforcment policies are increasing.

    As for interference, I can’t believe ppl are complaining about the interference calls. That has got to be the #1 complaint w/ refs, that they don’t call interference, now that they’re going to, you’re bitching that they’re going to call it? I think you just like criticizing refs for the hell of it.

    And the mouthing off to the officials thing is the gem of this batch of rules. I get pissed off at my OWN players for mouthing off to them. The officials are not going to change their ruling b/c you ***** at them, more likely the opposite, so why do it? Hopefully, the threat of being penalized additionally will stop THAT load of BS.

    These rule changes are interesting and should definately speed the game up, if enforced properly. Though the first month will be ridiculous as players try to test the boundaries of this system. But as long as they actually follow the rules (i.e. they hurry up on faceoffs, they don’t mouth off, and they don’t obstruct), then they won’t get called. And teams who aren’t smart enough to follow the rules…well, if they lose b/c they were 5 on 3 the entire game, that’s their problem.

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