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2020-21 ATO SEASON: WEEK 20

By USA Hockey, 01/15/21, 6:00AM MST


QUESTION: Are 10U players required by USA Hockey to wear mouth guards? Rule 304 is a little confusing how it's currently written.

ANSWERRule 304(f) in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states:
“All players, including goalkeepers, in the 12 & under (Youth and Girls’) through Youth 18 & under (including High School) and Girls’ 19 & under age classifications are required to wear a colored (non-clear) internal mouthpiece that covers all the remaining teeth of one jaw, customarily the upper. It is strongly recommended, in all classifications, that all players wear a mouthpiece form fitted by a dentist.”
Since 10U does not fall between 12U and 18U, they are not required to wear mouthpieces (only recommended at this level).


QUESTION: Player X is skating with the puck. Player Y is back-checking, and is periodically tapping/slapping the side of Player X's skates with his stick, in an attempt to disrupt Player X's progress with the puck. Is Player Y committing a penalty?

ANSWERPlayers cannot tap, slap, or otherwise strike an opponent with their stick. Sticks are restricted to playing the puck or making contact with the lower portion of an opponent’s stick to make them lose control of the puck. Any other contact would be penalized as Slashing, Tripping, Hooking, Cross-Checking, etc.


QUESTION: What action should the referee take if a coach who has already been assessed a game misconduct refuses to move more than 10 feet from his/her players bench?

ANSWERIf a coach refuses to leave the player bench area after being removed from the game, the officials should give warning to the team bench and have them remove the coach. If this does not occur, the officials should assess a bench minor penalty (Delay of Game). If this still does not occur, the officials would have no other choice but to suspend the game and file a Game Report for the Game Misconduct and include the “refusal to leave” incident. The local disciplinary body (league, association, affiliate, etc.) would take action from there.


QUESTION: Does the rule regarding all face-offs taking place at one of the nine face-off spots mean that the center ice spot should not be used for a Last Play face-off? Should it only be used for the start of a period, after a goal, and illegal sub?

ANSWERCenter ice would be used to spot face-off locations when dealing with a Last Play face-off, in addition to the situations you list in your question.


QUESTION: I play in an Adult league. I have a Go-pro Camera mount on my helmet. I know as soon as you see it you're going to say it's illegal, but I have not made any physical modifications to the helmet. Nothing was cut or removed, and the integrity of the shell has not been compromised whatsoever.

ANSWER: In this case, the camera mount is still considered a major alteration to the helmet. It is not part of the helmet’s original manufacture. In short, the helmet is illegal if it has any type of device (or mount) attached.