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2022-23 ATO | WEEK 21

By USA Hockey Officiating Program, 01/20/23, 6:45AM MST


QUESTIONMay an official officiate a game if his/her child is playing?

ANSWER: In general USA Hockey always discourages game assignors from assigning officials to games that may present a “conflict of interest”. However, since the USA Hockey National Office does not coordinate or monitor any game assignments we cannot completely address this concern. Therefore, we suggest asking your league about this situation and for clarification on the game assignment process in your area.


QUESTIONWhere can I find the USAH Official/Referee Evaluation Form on the web site?

ANSWER: The USA Hockey Officiating Evaluation Form is not available on the USA Hockey website. Since the Evaluation Program has moved to an entirely online website-based system, USAH Evaluators are no longer required to complete the old paper-form. If you are a trained evaluator, you may access the online Evaluation System through your District Evaluation Coordinator.


QUESTIONI got kicked out of a game for hitting my stick against the glass and cheering after we scored while in the penalty box. The ref came over and told me it was illegal and signaled for me to be thrown out until I talked him out of it. Is it illegal to touch the glass in the penalty box?

ANSWERRule 601.d in the USA Hockey Playing Rules states,

“A misconduct or game misconduct, at the discretion of the Referee and based on severity, shall be assessed to any player who commits the following actions:

- Touches or holds any official with his hand or stick.
- Attempts to continue an altercation after been ordered to stop, or resists the linesman in stopping the altercation.
- Intentionally bangs the boards or protective glass or goal frame with his stick or any other object at anytime. If done in protest of an officials’ decision, an additional minor penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct shall also be assessed.”


QUESTIONAfter two years of animated debate, I as the tournament EMT, have been told that I am "confused" on the rule which requires Squirt level players to wear mouth guards. I think they are required after reading Section 304 and the coaches in Rochester Mn read the rule as an option at this level. Am I confused?

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.”


QUESTIONI disallowed a goal in a game because the net was knocked off as the player was shooting. A Level 4 official told me that if the puck would have gone in even though net was off, its still a goal. I disagreed based on rule stating once the net is off and official is aware, play should be blown dead. Could he be thinking of college rules because USA Hockey doesn’t have this in their rules?

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.”

Therefore, if the officials are confident that the net was displaced prior to the puck crossing the line then the goal must be disallowed.


The USA Hockey Playing Rules are now available as a mobile device app! Check your Apple, Android, or Windows app store to download this playing rule app free of charge.

Check out the USA Hockey mobile-friendly online rulebook application! Enter into your mobile device’s web browser to gain instant access to the USA Hockey Playing Rules (must have mobile or internet service).

The USA Hockey Playing Rules Casebook and other educational material can be found under the OFFICIALS tab at