It sounds like fans aren’t real happy with the way games are being called in the WCHA so far this season under the rules emphasis designed to crack down on obstruction of the puck carrier.
At least, that’s the way it has come into commissioner Bruce McLeod’s office. He told Kevin Pates of the Duluth News Tribune that for every e-mail saluting the changes, there are 10 condemning them. Last week, he told Brad Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald that complaints are coming from fans far more than they’re coming from coaches.
It’s understandable. The game wasn’t meant to be a series of 5-on-3s and 4-on-3s, taking away from the natural flow of full-strength play.
But college hockey had to do this, and it had to do it now. Here are two reasons:
** The NHL wants it. Like it or not, the college game is connected to the pro game. That’s the only way a lot of elite players are ever going to come to college in the first place — if it gives them an opportunity to get closer to being a pro-level player.
Check out this statement by Bruce McCleod. Hum...
The things we’ve heard most have been, ‘You’re making hockey a special teams game’ and ‘It’s still a physical game and you’re trying to take that away,’ ” said McLeod this week. “The NCAA is adamant about enforcing the rules and we don’t think it will be a big issue after a period of adjustment.”