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News: June 2006

USA Hockey Issues New Standards of Play and Rules Emphasis for 2006-07 Season

Atlantic District Referee-in-Chief Tony Mariconda reports that USA Hockey has adopted new standards of play and rules emphases for the 2006-07 season. Here are the new standards:

USA Hockey 2006-07 New Standards of Play and Rules Emphasis

Through the new standard of rules enforcement, our game will continue to allow the opportunity for improved skill development and a more positive hockey environment for all participants. The mission of USA Hockey is clear; through this new initiative a greater emphasis will be placed on skating, puck possession and the proper use of the body to establish position and a competitive advantage.

The goal of the enforcement standard is to reduce restraining infractions in the game and not to remove legal body checking or body contact. A hard body check or using body contact/position (non-checking classifications) to gain a competitive advantage over the opponent should not be penalized as long as it is performed within the rules.

The principles of this new enforcement standard include the following:


  • The use of the stick will be limited to only playing the puck.

  • The stick will not be allowed to in any way impede a player's progress.

  • The use of a free hand/arm will not be allowed to grab or impede a player's progress.

  • Players who use their physical skills and/or anticipation and have a positional advantage shall not lose that advantage as a result of illegal acts by the opponent.

  • Players will be held accountable for acts of an intimidating or dangerous nature.

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