Friday, June 22, 2007

The Blackhawks do something right (The NHL BOG meetings)

If you hadn't heard, there was a meeting of the Board of Governors of the NHL this past week. Not a lot of big news came out of it, but there were some rule tweaks.

From now on all face-offs will take place at a face-off dot (imagine that).

If an interference penalty results in an injury, the referee is now allowed to make the call a 5 minute major, especially if it is a late hit that causes an injury. What's more important about this call is that since you can call a major penalty on the play, linesmen can now call interference majors. Don't expect it to actually happen often, but now linesman can call major penalties for interference.

Also, a penalty shot can result when a player is on a breakaway and is taken down anywhere in the neutral zone. Before the player had to be across the red line before it could be a penalty shot.

The league will NOT be switching back to colors at home next year, after everyone and their mother figured it was going to happen. As a season ticket holder, I'm disappointed by this. I want to see a wide variety of colors coming in each night. I don't want to see "home color" vs. white night after night after night. I never really thought about this when they switched from white to color at home the first time around, but after a couple of years of it, I am convinced.

The most interesting news, and an instance where the league's most irrelevant team actually does something good, is when the BOG discussed the instigator rule.

According to Bob MacKenzie:
The Governors did not endorse a recommendation from the general managers to ease up on suspensions as a result of accumulated instigator penalties. The GM's had suggested the threshold for a player getting a one-game suspension should be after three, not five, instigators, but the competition committee last week also rejected that recommendation and the Governors backed the competition committee's view, even though the Chicago Blackhawks proposed at this meeting to abolish the instigator entirely.
If that is true, then bully for the Blackhawks. The instigator rule, the suspensions of players and fines of coaches all needs to go. The instigator rule just leaves the league open for more players to take cheap shots at each other. If a player commits a legitimate penalty forcing another player to go, just give them an extra 2 for roughing.

That's all for today. I'm off to the Caps' draft party in a little while, hopefully an update on that by the end of the weekend. Or you can go check out "On Frozen Blog's" coverage from the floor.

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