As everyone knows, the Board of Governors met in Las Vegas this week to discuss a number of things (one of which might include the first three letters of the alphabet not in alphabetical order). During these meetings, they decided that the players use their hands too much and instituted two new rule changes.
Per the NHL website, Rule 67 (handling the puck) now includes:
a penalty now will be issued any time a player places his hand over the puck while it is on the ice in order to conceal it from an opponent or prevent an opponent from playing the puck.
The original rule stated:
67.2 Minor Penalty — Player – A player shall be permitted to catch the puck out of the air but must immediately place it or knock it down to the ice. If he catches it and skates with it, either to avoid a check or to gain a territorial advantage over his opponent, a minor penalty shall be assessed for “closing his hand on the puck”.
A minor penalty shall be imposed on a player who, while play is in progress, picks up the puck off the ice with his hand.
Simply put, if a player tries to get a whistle by covering the puck so their opponent can’t get to it, they will get the whistle…and a two-minute penalty.
The other rule change was to Rule 76 (faceoffs) which per the NHL website now includes:
a delay of game penalty now will be issued to any player taking a faceoff who uses his hand to direct the puck in any direction.
Honestly, I don’t remember ever seeing a player win a faceoff using their hands to push the puck but then again as a Rangers fan, I don’t see many faceoff wins in the first place. Either way, this is no longer allowed.
So what did we learn from all of this? Keep your hands in your gloves boys!