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2019-20 ATO Season: Week 25

By USA Hockey, 02/28/20, 6:00AM MST


QUESTION: Hi, when deciding on a major penalty, what constitutes "with injury" in the rules. Is it a player that needs to leave the ice or is it also when a player is down for a couple minutes but is able to return to the game?

ANSWER: There is no “definition” of an injury, and most officials have little to no medical training. Therefore, USA Hockey instructs all officials to take their time and observe how the player responds after the contact. How long does the player stay on the ice? Does he need assistance skating to the bench? Does he return to the bench or immediately go to the locker room? Is there any visible blood, or other obvious sign?
It can be a difficult decision to make, so all officials should err on the side of caution and assess the Major plus Game Misconduct if there is no strong doubt of an injury.

QUESTION: Hello, we are getting conflicting information regarding anchoring goal nets. Our organization says it is against USA Hockey to have goals lightly secured in any game involving 10u. Our league said to follow USA Hockey rules and I can not find anything besides rule 105. Is Rule 105 the answer to my question, or is there a specific set of rules for 10u. Thank you.

ANSWER: USA Hockey does not have any official policy regarding the use of goal-post pins. The decision of what playing levels should use them is left to the Local Associations, Team Officials, and Game Officials to make with the best interests of fair play and player safety in mind. We recommend contacting your local Youth Association to receive more information about their policies.

QUESTION: I am curious why: if team A is on the power play, and team B ices the puck - but the official mistakenly blows the play dead as icing by mistake, why is the short handed team awarded the face off in Team A's defensive zone as opposed to center spot or last played outside the zone?

ANSWER: The short-handed team isn’t awarded anything. The ”spirit and intent” of that Icing rule is to prevent taking half a length of ice away from the short-handed team who did absolutely nothing wrong. They are entitled to shoot the puck down the length of the ice, and unfortunately the officials erred in blowing the whistle. Why take half the length of the ice from the team who didn’t commit a violation?

QUESTION: I coach a Mite team that does not have a goalie. We are going to rotate players and I want to know if they can use the same helmet/face mask that they use when they are a skater?

ANSWER: There are no rules in the USAH Playing Rules that require a goalkeeper to wear a specific Goalkeeper Helmet and Face-mask. As long as the helmet and face-mask are HECC approved (look for valid expiration date on sticker), the Goalkeeper may wear a normal player helmet.

QUESTION: Last night our goalie made a butterfly save with his leg pad and in doing do the puck came to rest under his left pad, some of the puck was visible under the pad, but the puck was not moving or loose. My question is when does the referee blow his/her whistle and consider the play dead?
1.  Does the puck need to be under the pad and not visible for the ref to blow his whistle?
2.  Does the goalie need to put his glove on the side of the pad to cover the puck up, assuming he can see it, remember he's in the butterfly position?

ANSWER: USA Hockey Officials are instructed to stop play when the goalkeeper has sufficient control of the puck. Obviously a partially covered puck will always open to interpretation as to what constitutes “sufficient control”. A general rule might be “if the players cannot easily re-gain control of the puck then the puck should be considered ‘covered’”.
That being said, players are not free to poke at the goalkeeper just because the whistle has not blown. All stick contact with the goalkeeper should be penalized.