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2020-21 ATO SEASON: WEEK 23

By USA Hockey, 02/05/21, 6:00AM MST


QUESTION: I do not see diving or embellishment as a penalty in the USA Hockey rule book, can a penalty be called for diving in youth hockey?

ANSWER: Strictly speaking, there is no “diving” penalty in the USA Hockey Playing Rules. That being said, an official could certainly communicate with either the player or the team coach and make it clear that any “obvious” attempt to draw a penalty might not result in a penalty call. A good coach will correct the behavior since “diving” is certainly not a fundamental skill of the game.


QUESTION: If I am the back official and my partner misses an blatant off-sides and I don't blow it right away and the team that was off-sides scores a goal before the play leaves the zone, can I confer with my partner, before play continues and wave off the goal, or is it too late for that? Similar question if he waves off an icing that is an icing.

ANSWERRule 502(a) in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states,
“The Referee may not change his decision, or that of any other official, after the resumption of play following the rendering of the original decision.”
In other words, the game officials should make every attempt to make correct calls even if that means changing a decision. While no one likes to admit a mistake, the reality is they happen and most coaches are understanding and respectful to officials who admit “we missed it Coach, but we care enough about the game to correct the error”.
That being said, once the puck is dropped there can be no further discussion.


QUESTION: A team dumps the puck in; delayed off-sides. During this delay the defending team somehow knocks their net off; the Referee whistles the play dead Because the net is knocked off. Where is the ensuing face-off?

ANSWERDue to the delayed off-side, the face-off should be located at the Neutral Zone face-off spot nearest to where the puck was located when play was stopped.


QUESTION: A goalie goes behind his net to play the puck. On the way back to the crease, he bumps into an opposing player and falls. The opposing player did not deliberately check the goalie, but did nothing to get out of his way. Is this goaltender interference since the goalie was in his "privileged area"?

ANSWERPlayer to Goalkeeper contact should always be strictly judged and minimally tolerated. That being said, a player is entitled to the space he/she occupies. Therefore, assuming the player did not change lanes or make any overt movement to make contact with the goalkeeper (and did not make any careless or reckless contact with the goalkeeper) then the contact should not be penalized.


QUESTION: During play a player has puck and is just stick-handling below his own goal line and the other team is not pressuring him to advance, Is this a delay of game?

ANSWERThere is no rule in the USA Hockey Playing Rules that states a team MUST advance the puck up the ice.