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Calgary, AB • Canada •
Per TSN, http://tsn.ca/nhl/news_st...=211407&hubname=

In order:

Penalty Shots. Really, this just brings it in line with what all of Canada has been doing for a few years now, and I agree with it. Why should you not be allowed a penalty shot when you get tackled from behind, just because the other team's player didn't wait another two-thirds of a second? A breakaway is a breakaway, regardless of how much ice you have left to travel.

Faceoffs. This is the one that really boggles my mind. Now, I'm all for not having the faceoffs square in the middle of the ice in the Defending Zone. But what's wrong with just always lining a faceoff up with the dots? The two prime cases where this is totally illogical are as follows:
1) Offsides. Previously, if a pass was put into the Attacking Zone, causing a delayed offside, and offside wound up being called prior to that delayed offside being cleared, the faceoff would take place where the pass originated from. So what will happen now? Say the pass is thrown in half way between the blue line and red line, and offside is directly called as a result. Will the faceoff be at the blue line dot, which is an unfair advantage to the attacking team, or at center, which is an unfair advantage to the defending team?
2) Deflected shots out of the arena. Now, as I said, I'm all for getting rid of having faceoffs in the middle of the ice. But what happens if a shot is taken from the point, gets deflected by the Defending team a few feet away, and goes out of play? Where's the faceoff? Again, it will be unfair to one team or the other. Either you can pull it out to the neutral zone, which is unfair to the attacking team, or you can push it all the way into the defending zone, which is HUGELY unfair to the defending team!
Regardless of how they rule these, one basic thing will happen: the job of the linesman just because more watered down. First they make them not have to worry about offside passes (don't get me wrong, I agree with getting rid of that rule), and now they don't have to worry about where passes are taken from. A linesman now gets to do three things: icings, offsides, and breaking up scrums. Pretty soon the game will be officiated by two referees that can't skate (since they have so little ice to cover), and 2 linesmen that may as well be bouncers, since all they'll need to do is break up fights.

Next: major for interference. This is just logical, so this will be short. It should be like minor hockey in Canada is - you can be assessed a major for anything that results in an injury. As a referee, I've called both a major and game misconduct for tripping, and a major and game misconduct for interference before, as they caused injuries.

Last: No more gross misconducts. Why? Now, it does make some sense in the NHL, since there are only a handful called each season. But again, it's watering down the rules. Instead of having to be able to differenciate between a game misconduct and a gross misconduct, it's now just all a game misconduct. Do they want referees that can't skate AND can't think?

Really, it's the faceoff change that really makes me wonder what's going on. Why limit the options of the linesman so much? Soon we'll have to have more room in the book for the situations on what dot is to be used when than it was to just allow it wherever. Although, just so long as it doesn't trickle down into minor hockey, which it probably will, I guess it doesn't really matter to me...
Filed Under:   Rules   NHL   Faceoffs   Referees   Linesmen  
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