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2021-22 ATO | WEEK 9

By USA Hockey, 10/01/21, 6:15AM MDT


This week’s features: Displaced goals, Serving penalties, Serving suspensions, and more...

QUESTION: What are some rules about injuries caused during play?

ANSWERThis question is very vague and difficult to answer. Generally speaking, not every injury results in a penalty. A player could be body checked using perfectly legal technique (stick down, torso-to-torso, etc.), and the contact may result in the opponent falling to the ice and getting injured.

Furthermore, defining an "injury" is similarly difficult. Some injuries are obvious, but others (such as concussions) may not show symptoms immediately. A player may leave the game for a shift, or they may leave for the remainder of the game. In most cases, there's no real objective way of knowing how bad an "injury" is.

This the main basis for the 2021-25 Playing Rules change that replaced "injury" with "reckless endangerment" with regard to contact and what constitutes a major plus game misconduct penalty. Now the game officials can judge the actions of the player vs. trying to predict the affect of an "injury".  


QUESTION: Player A1 slashes player B1 and the referee signals a delayed penalty. Player A1 then slashes player B2. Would player A1’s penalty time be a double-minor or two separate penalties causing a 5 v. 3?

ANSWERSince both minors to Team A are on the same player (A1), then Team A would play 5 vs. 4 for four minutes.


QUESTION: For a Checking-from-behind penalty, how long should the player be in the penalty box? We realize it is a 2 and a 10, but when is the ten minutes started? We could not find it on the website that states penalty times and how long the player shall remain in the box. Does the ten minutes start after the two minutes is over it does it start immediately?

ANSWERIf a player receives a Minor and Misconduct penalty he must serve the entire twelve minutes (2+10) consecutively. The additional player his team must place in the box is serving the shorthanded time (not the Minor itself). Since the Minor penalty must be served first (and posted on the penalty clock) the additional player is in the box so their team will have someone available to leave the penalty box and enter the game at the end of the Minor.

If the opposing team scores during the shorthanded Minor penalty time, the Minor is immediately terminated and the Misconduct penalty begins. In other words, the player who received the penalties will be released at the first whistle after ten minutes after the goal.


QUESTION: Is a youth player serving a suspension for a match penalty allowed to be in the locker room during games/practices or does the definition of participation in USA hockey games/practices only include the ice? Can they be on the player bench?

ANSWERStrictly speaking the USA Hockey National Office does not handle discipline questions. However, Rule 405 is very clear that a player who receives a Match penalty is suspended from “USA Hockey activity” until a disciplinary hearing is held. This means until the hearing the player may not have any contact with their team including practices, the team bench, locker room, or meetings.


QUESTION: I wanted to know if the puck is in the net and then a player from either team knocks the goal post off is it still considered a goal? Also if the net is already off and the whistle wasn’t blown does that goal count?

ANSWERRule 610(e) in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states,

“Play shall be stopped immediately when the goal frame has been displaced from its normal position.”

If the puck enters the goal prior to the goal frame being displaced, then the goal should be awarded. However, if the officials are 100% certain the goal frame was displaced prior to the puck completely crossing the goal line (regardless of when any whistle occurred) then the goal must be disallowed.


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