August 12, 2011 5:22 pm

NHL mulls changes at camp

This story on TSN.ca today detailed the rules changes that the NHL will consider during its annual research and development camp next week in Toronto. I decided to weigh in with my thoughts on the potential changes, but I’m more curious to gauge your reaction to them…

“Hybrid” icing rule: Officials will blow dead the action before an icing touch if it is clear, at the faceoff circle, that the defending player will touch the puck. Verdict: Sure, but I’m not sure I get the point. The point seems to be to avoid dangerous hits behind the net, but won’t the early whistle come only on plays when there’s no risk of collision anyway?

No icing allowed during shorthanded situations. Verdict: Maybe, but defending teams might still choose to ice the puck, kill a few seconds, get a little rest for their penalty killers and take their chances on a faceoff. The game would also slow down.

Overtime: 4-on-4 for four minutes, then 3-on-3 for three minutes. Verdict: No. There’s enough post-regulation gimmick stuff going on already. Most fans like the shootout, but let’s focus on tweaking the points system instead.

No line change for teams whistled for offside. Verdict: No opinion whatsoever.

Post-offside faceoff in offending team’s end. Verdict: I agree with TSN on this one. I don’t get the point, and it might stifle creativity. No need to change.

No more trapezoid behind the net. Verdict: Ditch it.

In-net goal-line camera. Verdict: The most obvious one of them all. Yes.

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