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Ask the Official: Double Minors & Checking Penalties

By Minnesota Hockey, 01/25/19, 1:30PM CST


The Minnesota Hockey Officials Association (MHOA) offers players, parents, coaches and officials the opportunity to submit questions regarding USA Hockey and Minnesota Hockey playing rules to MHOA. An official will respond directly to all questions submitted, and select questions may be anonymously re-printed in the Minnesota Hockey newsletter.

To submit a question, click here.

Question: How would the following situation be handled? After a scrum, a player from Team A receives a double-minor. During the same scrum, two players from Team B each receive single minor penalties.

Answer: This would fall under the coincident minor penalty rule. The rule states that we always offset an equal number of minor penalties, regardless of the number of players receiving those penalties. Therefore, the teams would play at full strength.

Team A player would serve 4:00 minutes and return to the ice only after the first stoppage after the 4:00 minutes have been served.

The Team B players would each serve 2:00 minutes and then be eligible to return once a stoppage of play occurs.

Rule reference: 402 (f)

Question: Last night, there was an icing called despite being waved off by the other official. I didn’t think much of it until the faceoff stayed in our zone. Aren’t faceoffs following errors on icing calls supposed to take place at center ice?  

Answer: If the officials erred in calling an “icing the puck” infraction (regardless of whether either team is shorthanded), a face-off shall occur at the end zone face-off spot nearest to the location of the puck when play was stopped.

NOTE: This rule was changed as part of the rule changes in the 2017 rule change year.

Rule reference: 624 (c)

Question: We recently had a game in which an official blew his whistle for our team sending an extra attacker on the ice before our goalie made it to the bench. I saw it coming so I wasn’t surprised by the initial call.  Then, they put the faceoff in our defensive zone though and our entire team went crazy. Thankfully, we ended up scoring to tie the game anyway, but the call could have cost our team the game. Any idea why the official didn’t put the faceoff at center ice like it usually is?

Answer:  Typically, the face off following a premature goalie substitution shall be conducted at center ice spot. However, if the offending (your) team had possession of the puck in their own half of the ice at the time of the whistle, then the face off would occur at the nearest spot closest to the puck when the whistle stopped play.

I haven’t seen a face off following this call end up in the offending team’s defensive zone, but without knowing the details of the situation, it’s definitely possible within the rules and was likely the correct call.

Question: At my daughter’s last game, a player from the opposing team had one of the biggest open ice hits I’ve seen on one of our girls, and she only received a two-minute penalty.  Are there more serious penalty options for body checking in girls hockey games?

Answer: Yes, there are multiple levels of penalties for checking penalties in non-check classifications.

A minor or major penalty shall be assessed to a player who body checks an opponent in a body contact category or adult non-check classification.

A major plus game misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player who injurers an opponent with a body check in a Body Contact category or non-check Adult classification.

Rule reference: 604 (c & d)

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