NHL-NHLPA recommend rules changes


The National Hockey League’s competition committee met today in New York to look at a few possible changes that could happen in the 2015-16 NHL season. After deliberating on several topics that the teams and the fans were hoping to see changed, the league issued the following statement on possible changes that could be implemented next season.

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Former Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli was there representing the league in the talks.

Any of the below recommendations will still need approval by the NHLPA’s Executive Board and the NHL’s Board of Governors. If both parties are agreeable, we’ll see these changes become part of the rules.

The league has decided to recommend a coaches challenge to the game.

“The Committee recommends that a Coach’s Challenge be adopted for expanded video review for goals that may have resulted from (1) goaltender interference and (2) offside plays. The video review process and all decisions on goals where goaltender interference may have occurred will be the responsibility of the Referees at ice level, in consultation with the NHL’s Situation Room in Toronto; similarly, goals that may have resulted from an offside play will be reviewed and determined by the on-ice officials, in consultation with the NHL’s Situation Room in Toronto. In order for a coach to make a challenge, the team must have its timeout available.”

Well, that will mollify some of the fans. It’s not a bad change, and it gives the coach an option other than screaming at the refs. The league wasn’t clear on if a failed challenge would lead to a loss of a time out though.

They’ve also got a recommendation on how face-offs happen.

“The Committee recommends a change to the face-off rule, whereby, for all face-offs in the defensive zone, the player from the defensive zone team must put down his stick first. For face-offs at center ice, the rule will remain the same, requiring that the visiting team player put his stick down first.”

The league did attempt to address how the NHL handles overtime, but the NHL and the players’ union couldn’t reach consensus. There was hope that the league could find a way to get rid of the shootout, but no viable plan came out of today’s talks.

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