Time to change faceoff rules

Nauman Vania, Oshawa, Ont.

The NHL is going to be looking at a number of issues concerning the future of the game at the World Hockey Summit. Included in those discussions will surely be the rules of the game.

I like the idea of revamping the faceoff system. One thing I have never understood was that one team causes a stoppage in play – icing, offside, freezing along the boards, shooting it out of play, etc. – yet they have an equal opportunity to get the puck back via faceoff.

I suggest that if a team causes play to be stopped, the other team should get control of the puck, like how it is done in many other sports like soccer and basketball.

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How can this be done? Place the puck on the dot and blow the whistle. The center, uncontested, can then pull the puck back or push it forward; either way the team that didn’t cause the stoppage has the puck. Could be very exciting in the offensive zone: potentially an instant scoring chance, like a free kick in soccer.

This could eliminate the need for a minor penalty for the player who shoots the puck over the boards and would cause defenders to think twice before they ice the puck – no line change and no puck.