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GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

Posted on: June 8, 2011 6:43 pm
Edited on: June 8, 2011 6:51 pm
 
BOSTON --- NHL general managers approved an expansion of the rule governing hits to the head of vulnerable players on Wednesday, another step in the process as the league attempts to curb concussions in the sport.

“Generally speaking, it’s taking Rule 48 and expanding it in a fashion that will protect players,” said Brendan Shanahan, a former NHL player and current league executive who made a presentation to the GMs. “This wouldn’t be a blanket rule where any contact to the head would be illegal. It’s not quite that far, but it’s more than we have right now.”

Rule 48, put into place at end of the 2009-10 season, made blindside hits to where an opponent’s head is targeted illegal. The new change would take the word “blindside” out and would include various other tweaks to in-game punishment – minor and major penalties --- along with supplemental discipline (suspensions).

The changes will need to be approved by the NHLPA Competition Committee --- which next meets on Monday --- then the league’s Board of Governors, who convene on June 21.

Former NHL player Rob Blake, who is also part of the NHL’s hockey operations office, said there was “some talk” of a blanket rule that would make any hits to the head --- like what exists under international hockey rules --- illegal, but such a rule lacked broad support.

“When we looked at broadening the head hit rule, we didn’t want to eliminate hitting,” Blake said. “You are going to have contact. You are going to have full-body hits. If you want a complete ban, those [hits] would have been ruled out. We didn’t want to go that far by any means. . . .The issue we have is targeting the head. That’s an illegal hit.”

The concussion issue was brought to the forefront again earlier this week when Boston Bruins forward Nathan Horton suffered a severe concussion after a check from Vancouver’s Aaron Rome in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final. Rome as given a five-minute major for interference, ejected and eventually suspended for the durations of the finals.

Blake said the expanded Rule 48 would not include such collisions.

“If it happened in the exact same way, it’s still going to be an interference major,” Blake said.

Some of the general managers who emerged from the meeting said that they didn’t want to fundamentally change the product on the ice.

“I think people watch these interviews and say, ‘These guys don’t care about headshots,’” Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke said. “The tightrope we walk is that this is a full-contact sport. It always has been. It’s been a full-contact sport since we opened the doors for business. It’s one of the distinctive features of what we do. We don’t want to change that. We want to eliminate the really dangerous parts of the play, but you’re going to get hit and there are going to be injuries.”

-- A.J. Perez

Category: NHL
Comments
kkjyywlpo
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 16, 2011 11:20 am
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Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: June 10, 2011 11:17 am
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

This situation with the headhunting is actually very easy to fix. Start suspending players that commit those hits and suspend them for a good deal of time, screw this 1-3 maybe even 5 game deal. Start it at 10 games minimum and then 20 next offense. And for god sakes be consistent. When players know they lose a lot of money they will stop. You can wreck people just fine w/o ever hitting dirty.

I agree 100 percent.  A little while ago I suggested even something tougher for head hunters to deal with...  20 games first offence, 40 for the second and a complete season and 82 games the 3rd time a guy screws up.  Hit them right where it counts, in the pocket book.  If a making as little as 2 million per season knows one bad hit is going to cost him 500 grand he's less likely to do it.  And if he does and knows his next bad hit is going to be worth 1 million dollars he's even less likely to do it.

And one more thing... for good measure just to be sure teams don't call up goons on 2 way deals that do stupid things let's make it policy to fine the coaches and owners big money when their player screws up.... a fine that goes up every offence for them as well... if the league REALLY WANTS to solve this problem they could easily do it... it's not that hard.  Their only obstacle could be the union but the next CBA is coming up soon... the owners should tell the players this is what we're gonna do and if you want to miss another season and destroy the game then go ahead... imagine the pressure and abuse players will get from fans if they strike over something like this.... it'll never happen because 95 percent of NHL players would tell the dirty 5 percent to f*** off.... 

The NHL makes me laugh... it's the sport I grew up watching and love more then any other by far.... yet the funny part is they don't make any sense.  They do things like bring in the instigator penalty and other rules to keep the fighters out of the league but allow players like Matt Cooke the opportunity to destroy people 2 or 3 times a year with dirty hits... either let the players police themselves like the old days and make dirty players accountable for their actions or implement new rules with serious suspensions... this 1 and 2 and 4 game crap isn't getting through to these guys.....



Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: June 9, 2011 1:43 pm
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

They won't release any specifics until the rule changes are approved..



Since: Jul 1, 2010
Posted on: June 9, 2011 1:16 pm
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

Great reporting by NHL writers.   Read 5 stories and none of them mention the specific changes by the gms other than the word "blindside" and that minors and majors will be in the rule.     Hockey reporting stinks in the states.  At least TSN specified that specifics weren't provided to the media.



Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: June 9, 2011 11:54 am
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

it's a joke they say they changed the rule on head shots yet never go into detail on it, THERE IS NO FIX, if you can check there will be head shots, and hitting will not be removed from the game. There are already penalties for slashing, high-sticking and so on, it still happens, they already allow the refs to give 5 minute majors and game misconducts for headshots, plus possible suspension, what else can they do.




Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: June 9, 2011 11:53 am
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

<span style="font-size: x-small; color: #0000ff; font-family: Arial;">it's a joke they say they changed the rule on head shots yet never go into detail on it, THERE IS NO FIX, if you can check there will be head shots, and hitting will not be removed from the game. There are already penalties for slashing, high-sticking and so on, it still happens, they already allow the refs to give 5 minute majors and game misconducts for headshots, plus possible suspension, what else can they do.




Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: June 9, 2011 11:19 am
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

I know this will probably be unpopular, and I apologize to any folks in Canada, as I mentioned this idea to a friend from up there and he likened it to armegeddon. Either way, here goes:

I'm all for the policing of head shots as is being done, but I think it's time to consider having NHL players wear full helmets (the ones with facemasks).

If you watch a lot of these head hits, they knock the the helmet off and the head contact with the ice then causes as much damage as the hit. Not to mention all the other things (i.e. dental bills) that would be prevented by wearing a fully protective helmet.

To the traditionalist, no one liked it when they went to helmets, and to appease the players' union you would probably have to grandfather in the change, but if we are going to protect players there needs to be significant change.

Another point, even though deemed legal, the Montreal Police investigated Zedano Chara for the hit on Pacioretty. It's only a matter of time before an NHL city decides to go after a player and/or pass legislation based on dirty plays occuring in sporting events. When that happens it will likely be the end of fighting. The NHL (like the NFL) needs to continue to show a good faith effort to do everything possible to ensure their games do not become out of touch with the morals of society (especially in the US where we have this ever-increasing false sense of morals).

One final advantage to such a change - wouldn't it be great if the next time some guy took a high stick he didn't spend the next 30 seconds showing the .05mm cut on his lip to every official on the ice?




While I understand your points this will never happen and there are a few reasons why. First off the NHL needs as much player recognition as possible and the full helmets will not allow that. Another thing is that being so well protected will almost certainly encourage more stick play such as spearing and high sticks to the head. Lastly it should be a players choice. While I agree some equipment needs to be mandatory I do not think a full helm is one, if a player wants to wear it,then fine if not he should not have to. This situation with the headhunting is actually very easy to fix. Start suspending players that commit those hits and suspend them for a good deal of time, screw this 1-3 maybe even 5 game deal. Start it at 10 games minimum and then 20 next offense. And for god sakes be consistent. When players know they lose a lot of money they will stop. You can wreck people just fine w/o ever hitting dirty.




Since: Sep 25, 2008
Posted on: June 9, 2011 11:17 am
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

WTF? Am I the only one who thinks it would have been helpful to actually say what the tweaks were?



Since: Feb 10, 2009
Posted on: June 9, 2011 8:39 am
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

whats next a 4 minute double minor for touching



Since: Oct 16, 2007
Posted on: June 8, 2011 9:20 pm
 

GM's approve tweaks to headshot rule

I know this will probably be unpopular, and I apologize to any folks in Canada, as I mentioned this idea to a friend from up there and he likened it to armegeddon. Either way, here goes:

I'm all for the policing of head shots as is being done, but I think it's time to consider having NHL players wear full helmets (the ones with facemasks).

If you watch a lot of these head hits, they knock the the helmet off and the head contact with the ice then causes as much damage as the hit. Not to mention all the other things (i.e. dental bills) that would be prevented by wearing a fully protective helmet.

To the traditionalist, no one liked it when they went to helmets, and to appease the players' union you would probably have to grandfather in the change, but if we are going to protect players there needs to be significant change.

Another point, even though deemed legal, the Montreal Police investigated Zedano Chara for the hit on Pacioretty. It's only a matter of time before an NHL city decides to go after a player and/or pass legislation based on dirty plays occuring in sporting events. When that happens it will likely be the end of fighting. The NHL (like the NFL) needs to continue to show a good faith effort to do everything possible to ensure their games do not become out of touch with the morals of society (especially in the US where we have this ever-increasing false sense of morals).

One final advantage to such a change - wouldn't it be great if the next time some guy took a high stick he didn't spend the next 30 seconds showing the .05mm cut on his lip to every official on the ice?

 


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