Rule change?

Word emerged yesterday that the NHL might seek the “expedite” the proposed rule change that would outlaw certain hits to the head. The rule, proposed by the league’s general managers at their meetings this month, was to be considered this summer, but in a radio interview today, Colin Campbell discussed the possibility of having the rule put through now, likely for the start of the playoffs. There would be issues, such as well-defined rules and punishment, but the league appears to be seriously considering adopting the rules quickly. Terry Murray was asked today whether he would be in favor of such a move…

MURRAY: “I’d like to see it go into effect right away. The adjustment period, whether it’s this year or next year, is still going to take some times. But it brings focus to it much quicker, right now, because of the critical time of the year. Every game, every penalty could be the turning point in the outcome of the game. I think players would make that adjustment, emotionally and mentally, as quickly as they possibly could. I think, at the start of next year, it might drag it out a little bit.

“This is an issue that has been around for quite a few years. I can remember going to the draft several years ago and watching these same clips from the league office in our coaches’ meetings, and them asking for our opinions on it. It’s a careless play. You know, as a hockey player, when you’re coming up behind somebody and he’s not aware of you coming at him full speed, that you’re putting a player at risk here. There’s a possibility of an injury, and I think players themselves have to really look at the style of play that they’re showing in those situations.”

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