A look at some of the upcoming rule changes along with the new Illegal Hits to the Head rule and other points of emphasis this season.
I. ILLEGAL CHECK TO THE HEAD (48.1)
A lateral or blindside hit to an opponenet where the head is targeted and/or the principal point of contact is not permitted.
48.2 MINOR PENALTY
There is no provision for a minor penalty for this [48.1] rule.
In violation of an illegal check to the head, an automatic game misconduct and major or match penalty shall be given. A player will also face possible supplimentary discipline.
48.3 MAJOR PENALTY
For a violation of this rules, a major penalty shall be assessed.
48.4 GAME MISCONDUCT
An automatic game misconduct penalty shall be assessed whenever a major penalty is assessed under this rule.
48.5 MATCH PENALTY
The Referee, at his discretion, may assess a match penalty if, in his judgment, the player attempted to or deliberately injured his opponent with an illegal check to the head.
Hits to the head through illegal action such as elbowing, high sticking, charging, boarding, and other illegal acts will continue to be penalized within the existing standards and subject to on-ice penalties and supplimentary discipline.
II. LOW HITS (CLIPPING)
An illegal, low hit is a check that is delivered by a player with the sole intent to check the player in the area of his knees. A player may not lower his body position to deliver checks and could be subject to on-ice penalties and supplimentary discipline.
A hip check to the mid-section of an opponent is legal.
III. CONTACT ON ICINGS
Any unnecessary contact with a player playing a puck on an obvious icing that results in the player being knocked into the boards shall be called boarding or tripping. Players must avoid any type of physical contact on icings. A player runs the risk of an on-ice penalty as well as possible supplimentary discipline when making contact on these plays.
IV. RULES OF ENGAGEMENT:
ALTERCATIONS OFF OF PLAYING SURFACE
A misconduct or game misconduct penalty and possible supplimentary discipline shall be imposed on any player involved in fighting off the playing surface or with another player who is off the playing surface.
Any teams whose players become involved in an altercation other than during the periods of the game could be fined $25,000 and risk possible supplimentary discipline.
Any identifiable player who uses obscene, profane or abusive language or gestures directed at any person runs the risk of an unsportsmanlike penalty and possible supplimentary discipline.