Now that the teams are starting to gear up for the start of the next NHL season (thank God – I don’t know how many more replays of home runs I can stand watching on SportsCentre… yawn), there are an interesting few days of rule experimentation coming up August 18th and 19th in Toronto.
A few of the more interesting ones:
- Overtime with 3 minutes of 4 on 4, followed by 3 minutes of 3 on 3, then 3 minutes of 2 on 2, then a shootout.
- Hey, why stop there? Go all the way with another 3 minutes of 1 on 1 before the shootout. This sounds more like my pickup hockey games in the summer when our turnout numbers dwindle due to vacations.
- No icing the puck while shorthanded.
- Uh…what? This will lead to a whole bunch of players trying to figure out how to lob the puck over defencemen’s heads and into the neutral zone.
- After a face-off violation, opposition center may choose his face-off opponent.
- This almost feels like bullying, or picking on the smallest kid in school.
It seems strange that the NHL tinkers with its rules every year. I just don’t get it. Is the game really that bad? Do we really need rule changes? It amazes me why the NHL does this to OUR game. Other professional sports don’t goof around this much with their rules. Can you imagine the uproar if Major League Baseball changed rules as often?
Stay classy, hockey fans.