NHL expands video review after calls missed in playoffs

League approved lifting limits on the number of times a coach can challenge a play during the game

The NHL is expanding its video review process to allow an unlimited number of coaching challenges to address concerns raised after several notable missed calls during the playoffs.

The new freedoms, however, come at a price.

ALSO READ: Top NHL draft prospects Jack Hughes, Kaapo Kakko know they’ll always be linked

On Thursday, the league’s general managers approved lifting limits on the number of times a coach can challenge a play during the game for goalie interference, offside and added the element of possible missed calls that would have resulted in a stoppage in play before a goal was scored.

On the downside, the first challenge that proves unsuccessful will result in a minor penalty. A second unsuccessful challenge in the same game would result in a double minor.

The league also will allow officials review major penalties to determine whether the call was accurate. Upon review, the referee would then have the option to reduce a major penalty to a minor.

Allowing stoppages in play to be reviewed comes after San Jose won Game 3 of the Western Conference final when officials missed a hand pass immediately before Erik Karlsson scored in overtime. Under the new rule, the play would have been reviewed automatically because all plays are reviewed in the final minute of a game and overtime.

“The theory is, we don’t want lots and lots of challenges. We don’t want to disrupt the flow of the game,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in announcing a series of changes that were approved a day before the league opens its draft in Vancouver.

“We only want challenges where it’s crystal clear that an egregious mistake has been made,” Bettman added. “If it’s, well, maybe it could be, maybe it shouldn’t, then there shouldn’t be a challenge.”

Allowing officials to review major penalties would have had the potential to change the complexion of Game 7 in a first-round series between Vegas and San Jose.

With Vegas leading 3-0, Golden Knights forward Cody Eakin was assessed a major penalty for a hit on San Jose’s Joe Pavelski, which the league later told the Golden Knights was not the right call. The Sharks scored four times on the ensuing major penalty and won 5-4 in overtime.

In that instance, the referee could have reviewed the call and determined whether to reduce the penalty to a two-minute minor.

Bettman said only 39 non-fighting major penalties were called last season.

The new rules, however, would not have allowed reviewing a missed penalty that led to the decisive goal in St. Louis’ 2-1 win over Boston in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final. Blues forward Tyler Bozak wasn’t penalized for tripping up Boston’s Noel Acciari seconds before David Perron scored.

In addition, referees can review double-minor penalties for high-sticking to determine whether the player was struck by an opponent or his own or teammate’s stick. If determined it was not an opposing stick, then the penalty would be rescinded, something Bettman said would have happened only four times last season.

GMs also approved rules to reduce the number of faceoffs in the neutral zone. Faceoffs will now be held in the offensive zone even if the attacking team was responsible for the puck going out of bounds.

Teams awarded a power play will now have the choice to determine which offensive zone circle to hold the ensuing faceoff.

The league also added a safety rule, requiring a player to either leave the ice or retrieve his helmet should his helmet come off during a play. The only exception comes if the player is in a position to play the puck when his helmet falls off.

Opponents will be issued a minor penalty for roughing if they’re deemed to have knocked off a player’s helmet on purpose.

John Wawrow, The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Government program grants funding for flood mapping study of Kitimat River

Kitimat received $150,000 to help provide flood preparation and support, to mitigate future risks.

Mother grizzly bear with two cubs spotted on Gruchy’s Beach trail near Terrace

Conservation officers also warning public to stay away from Grizzlies on lower Kitimat River

Terrace conservation officers relocate Spirit bear

Bear roamed Kitsumkalum Valley north of Terrace for many years

VIA Rail lays off 1,000 unionized workers across the country

Northern B.C. route Jasper to Prince George to Prince Rupert is not affected by VIA Rail layoffs

Council approves reduction to leisure services monthly pass rates during COVID-19

Passes will be discounted while COVID-19 restrictions are in place, and will return to normal after.

B.C. identifies 20 new COVID-19 cases, travellers specified in count

Pandemic total 3,028 cases, 51 people from outside Canada

Survey, hotline launched amid probe into racist blood-alcohol guessing game at B.C. hospital

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond has been appointed to lead an investigation by Health Minister Adrian Dix

Canadian policing organization calls for decriminalization of simple illicit drug possession

Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police want policing focus of opioid crisis to be replaced with a health one

Large rogue floating ‘island’ corralled by Lac la Hache residents

At least 60 feet wide, this large mass of plants is free-floating on the lake

B.C. ports part of data integration project to protect marine ecosystems

The $1.2 M federally funded program will draw crucial baseline data from Canada’s three coastlines

Filing deadline in RCMP sexual-harassment class-action extended due to COVID-19

Plaintiffs now have until January 2021 to submit claims for up to $222,000

Jamie Bacon pleads guilty to charge in Surrey Six case

The plea brings an end to a complex legal case that has spanned more than a decade

Hefty undeclared driver charges piling up, ICBC warns customers

Average extra penalty $2,971 after an at-fault accident

B.C. appeals judge’s decision to leave three clubhouses in Hells Angels hands

The province has filed two notices of appeal related to the B.C. Supreme Court decision

Most Read