BOCA RATON, Fla. – The NHL’s general managers didn’t see any reason to expand Rule 48 at their annual meetings.
A sub-group met with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to go over the topic, amongst other issues. Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen was reportedly bullish on adding blindside hits to the rule, which was made to curb headshots. According to general managers who were part of the group, this was shot down.
”Watched a lot of video and unanimously felt the rule is working. And they’re doing an excellent job of having it policed,” Toronto Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello said. “I don’t have any numbers. There were no statistics presented in there. You look at isolated incidents and try to see how they could have been prevented, if they could have been prevented and is it part of hitting in the game. But certainly everybody’s concerned about the safety. We had a lot of people in the room today.” (Josh Cooper, Puck Daddy)
The goalie equipment in the NHL is going to get smaller. I would say it's about EFN time. I am very happy about this. I think you will see the goalies numbers go down a bit and the players stats actually improve. So, there are some good things coming out of the NHL's GM meetings.
“The question was asked today, ‘Well, what’s different this time around?' Well, we are attacking it together,” Whitmore said. “You are hearing from some of the best goalies in the game and they think this is what is right. They want a level playing field within their ranks.”
Whitmore said that the league will be “cutting away all the fat, the parts that extend out past the body and don’t wrap” in the chest, pants and upper body area.
He noted that goaltender safety won’t be compromised by changing equipment.
NHL hockey operations director Colin Campbell said there is currently a rule that goaltenders will be suspended two games and fined $25,000 if they cheat with equipment. Campbell said the rule will be better enforced for next season.
“When Kay makes a decision on the goaltending equipment now in place and suspends a guy, don’t holler and scream,” Campbell said. “Believe in the process.” (puck daddy)