With the NHL Competition committee wrapping up their meetings and recommending a few rule changes, here are some I would like to see of my own to make things flow better and to get more offense. In addition to making visors mandatory, testing hybrid icing and looking at goalie equipment, I would do the following, some of which you have heard before in other places, but a couple that I think are unique and haven’t really been discussed before:
1) Lose the Trapeziod – Most goaltenders are average puck-handlers at best. Allowing them to play the puck would lead to more turnovers and more offensive chances. It would also help defensemen not get put in vulnerable positions for forechecking forwards.
2) Offensive Team Gets To Determine the Faceoff Position – If there is a faceoff in a team’s defensive zone, it is there for a reason. Whether it be a penalty, goalie freezing the puck, icing or the puck going over the glass. To further penalize the defending team, the offensive team (namely the centre) would be able to pick which side of the ice the faceoff will be taken.
3) Discontinue the Puck Over The Glass Rule – #2 above would create enough of a deterrent without actually sending a player to the box automatically for clearing the puck over the glass in the defensive zone, which is obviously accidental more often than not.
4) Remove the penalty for playing the puck with your hand off a faceoff – Face it, if it is in the offensive zone, it is blown dead anyway as a glove pass. If it is in the defensive zone, where hand passes are legal, why penalize a player for doing it in the one second after the puck drops. It has been missed, and in the scramble of a faceoff, there are too many bodies for a referee across the ice to accurately see if a player played it with their hand or not. Players have their sticks low to get a faceoff, and a bad bounce off the puck drop could result in a penalty.
5) Tagging up on the offside – It might make life more difficult for linesmen, but on an offside, once a player clears the zone on a delayed offside, he should be able to re-enter the offensive zone to forecheck. Even if they still have a player in the zone, as long as each “offside” player tags up before pursuing the puck, let the play go on. There would usually only be one or two players who need to tag up, so it wouldn’t be THAT tough on linesmen, and it would keep the game flowing better and not give defensemen so much time to make outlet passes.
6) Embellishment – If a player is deemed to have embellished a play to get a call, and the official is absolutely sure, then they should call the dive and only the dive. Players are trying too hard to do the official’s job and show them up to get a call, and if they resort to that, then that is worse than the original offense, which are usually tripping or hooking calls. The only exception would be high-sticking. After all, if you get hit in the head or the face with a stick, your natural reaction is going to be to snap your head out of the way. That is a natural, almost unavoidable reaction, not an embellishment.
So what do you think? Which ones make sense to you, and which ones wouldn’t work? Comment below or on our facebook page!