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Report: The NHL has a face-masking penalty now

Jan 16, 2013, 12:10 PM EDT

Alex Ovechkin Getty Images

The NHL has made a couple of small rule changes, according to Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston.

First, there’s now a penalty for touching the puck with a hand to win a faceoff.

Second, players will be penalized for grabbing an opponent’s facemask/visor.

We presume the second penalty wouldn’t apply to face-washing, only for grabbing.

  1. sjsharks66 - Jan 16, 2013 at 1:08 PM

    Great… So now when there IS a face wash they will just assume its grabbing the visor. I sense problems with this one.

    • ravenscaps48 - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:16 PM

      I can see the embelishers now. This has problem written all over it

      • nach0mancandysandwich - Jan 16, 2013 at 3:15 PM

        im not so sure i ever noticed a visor grab? kinda goofy.

      • joelwrobinson - Jan 16, 2013 at 4:05 PM

        you can’t fight with a visor on. so players will grab other players’ face masks in an attempt to remove their helmets, thus making them available to fight.

  2. hockeywithdrawal - Jan 16, 2013 at 1:35 PM

    As long as they’re still allowed to punch each other in the face, it appears we have our priorities intact still.

    • michiganhockey11 - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:37 PM

      Here here!

  3. dowhatifeellike - Jan 16, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    Look for more players to wear the face shield so they can draw that penalty.

    • govtminion - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:41 PM

      In which case more players are wearing visors, regardless of reason, which means this may be the NHL’s reasoning in the first place- whatever gets them wearing more protective gear, the better.

      (Not a fan of them myself, but I’m also not an NHL player.)

  4. sabatimus - Jan 16, 2013 at 1:43 PM

    I wonder if there’ll be an extra 2 tacked onto a fight if either combatant doesn’t remove his helmet and gets grabbed.

  5. dbarnes79 - Jan 16, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    I think visors should be mandatory for all players. But someone will have to go blind first though. Sad.

    • hockeyflow33 - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:22 PM

      Well since everyone is an adult why don’t we let them make the choice.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:24 PM

        flow, because of insurance costs. But your way does make it easier for general managers to be able to quickly figure out which players are smarter than the others.

    • michiganhockey11 - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:40 PM

      The AHL mandates them and you are seeing more and more players in the NHL with visors.

  6. capsfan19 - Jan 16, 2013 at 2:45 PM

    I can hear jeff skinner and brad marchand crying already! Ha ha ha

  7. rockthered1286 - Jan 16, 2013 at 3:13 PM

    This picture of Ovi just makes me miss the tinted visor.

  8. phillyphannn83 - Jan 16, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    dbarnes79 January 16, 2013, 1:54 PM EST

    I think visors should be mandatory for all players. But someone will have to go blind first though. Sad.
    Hate to burst your bubble but its already happened with no effect. A couple years ago, the Flyers’ best shot blocker, Ian Lapierre blocked a shot in the first round of the playoffs with his left eye. It shattered his eye socket and he never played a game again. He is now an analyst for the Flyers on CSN and he is blind in his left eye.

    • wingsdjy - Jan 17, 2013 at 9:57 AM

      Something similar happened to Bryan Berard as well. The former Calder Trophy winner took Hossa’s stick to the eye in 2000. After numerous surgeries though, he was able to play again for a few more seasons.

  9. valoisjoeybfeld69 - Jan 16, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    During a game against the Washington Capitals on Dec. 19, 1981 Glen Sharpley, former Minnesota North Star and Chicago Blackhawk had his six-year NHL tenure all but end after a stick slammed into his left eye

    “It was basically a dead pupil,” said Sharpley, who was just 25 years old at the time of the injury. “It stopped working and I couldn’t see.”

  10. kitshky - Jan 16, 2013 at 5:46 PM

    It’s ludicrous that they haven’t just simply grandfathered a visor rule in like helmets.

    It’s not about having the freedom to choose to wear a visor or not … it’s about stopping young players from being intimidated into taking the visor off when they come up because of antiquated culture of “toughness”.

    • pensfan603 - Jan 16, 2013 at 6:01 PM

      i Seoncd this alot of times you will notice either a team has all players who wear visors or a large number who dont not some wheres inbetween.

  11. kingfooj - Jan 17, 2013 at 1:34 AM

    bergeron loves pulling this stuff, the scrums will be interesting to see

  12. canuck54143 - Jan 17, 2013 at 11:07 AM

    NHL needs to step into modern world and use technologies available to improve helmets, and mouth guards and make all three mandatory. No reason today’s game isn’t requiring shield mouth guard, and concussion proof helmets. NHLPA is not doing their job and protecting players.

    • phillyphannn83 - Jan 19, 2013 at 3:22 AM

      There is not and never will be any such thing as a concussion proof helmet. If anyone thinks there is, then they dont understand what actually happens to the brain to cause a concussion. Its just not scientifically possible. Maybe the correct term you were looking for is concussion resistant.

  13. babykaby - Jan 21, 2013 at 5:45 AM

    This is probably a result of the playoffs last season when the dirty Bruins kept grabbing Backstrom’s visor and shaking his head when he had just returned from being out with a concussion…

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