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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.

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.



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