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2019-20 ATO Season: Week 8

By USA Hockey, 10/25/19, 6:00AM MDT


QUESTION: Team A player is carrying the puck in his attacking zone Team B player is behind player A Player B lifts player A's stick Player B continues holding the A player's stick up and makes no attempt to play the puck there is no hooking play made by Player B How long can Player B continue the stick lift before a penalty is issued?

ANSWER: Stick-lifts are legal as long as the contact is located at the lower portion of the opponent’s stick and used to separate the opponent from the puck. If a Stick-lift reaches the point where the opponent is not allowed to move freely or re-gain possession of the puck, then a minor penalty for Hooking could be assessed.

QUESTION: Will USA hockey ever go to the two referee/one linesman for U15 and above?

ANSWER: USA Hockey does not have any interest in using the two referees / one linesman system for any level.

QUESTION: Could you clarify the rule on "finishing a check" or "following through on your check"? For some reason, (maybe it's all the USA Hockey video's I've watched about checking) I was thinking our focus was on puck separation and not on the follow through, which in my opinion is an intimidation tactic. Any clarification would be greatly appreciated.

ANSWER: Rule 640(b) in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states,
“A minor or major penalty shall be assessed (except Adult Male Classifications) to any player who delivers an avoidable body check to an opponent who is no longer in possession and control of the puck.”
The emphasis of Body Checking continues to be “separating an opponent from the puck”, and players who deliver “avoidable” body-checks to players who are not in control of the puck should be penalized. There will always be some level of judgment with these types of calls. However, over the last 5 - 6 seasons USA Hockey has made excellent overall progress with eliminating “punishment” and “intimidation” hits from the game. With continued diligence from officials, and proper education from coaches, our game will continue to move toward a safer and more positive playing environment.

QUESTION: The following situation occurred in a game recently: Team A was skating with 3 players (2 minor penalties). Team B was skating with 4 players (1 minor penalty). To be clear; Team B has a 4 on 3 power play. There is a delayed penalty to Team B. During the delayed penalty Team A scores. What happens?

ANSWER: Rule 409 in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states that a team must be shorthanded to have an active penalty terminated by a goal. Therefore, in your situation the delayed penalty to Team B would be recorded but not served, and all other penalties shall remain unaffected.

QUESTION: For two boys to play and ref why do we have to pay USA hockey twice?

ANSWER: USA Hockey’s officiating registration fee is considered a separate entity from that of a player and/or coach. Whereas an adult player can also coach under the same registration fee, the official’s fee is separate and must be paid by each official. In the case of the adult player, USA Hockey utilizes the joint fee for them to coach as a means to encourage these adult players to volunteer their time as a youth hockey coach. This is not done on the officiating side for a variety of reasons.
Maintaining a separate fee actually assists us in being able to keep our costs down. USA Hockey purchases insurance coverage for each member type, recognizing that the insurance risk for a player/coach is going to be different than it is for an official. By doing so, our insurance costs are actually held to a minimum. Instead of purchasing a blanket insurance program that covers all inherent risks for all member types at a greater cost to all members, we can be more specific and actually purchase coverage that accounts for the specific risk of each member type.
In addition, the Officiating Education Program is a distinct program that has several benefits included as part of the registration process. These include the Rule Book/Case Book, Officiating Manuals, the majority of the expenses for the officiating seminar, and administrative costs that are specific to the conducting of our direct registration program, including testing and distribution of materials.
In contrast, there is an additional fee charged by the Coaching Education Program for clinic attendance and many of the coaching manuals would also need to be purchased. Finally, in many cases, the officials are perceived to be the only people involved who are getting paid, so the USA Hockey Board of Directors feel strongly that the cost of our Education program should be funded strictly by our officiating membership, hence the independent registration fee and program.