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NHL says ‘no major announcements or major changes’ following GM meetings

Mar 12, 2014, 6:06 PM EDT

Gary Bettman

Anybody expecting big developments out of this year’s NHL general manager meetings — this update is not for you.

“There are no major announcements or major changes,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said after three days of meetings in Boca Raton, Fla. “There will be some recommendations, some things people will look at, there will be some more homework done, but you should continue to enjoy the game principally the way it’s being played.”

Prior to the meetings there was speculation a number of fundamental changes could be on the table, including a potential overhaul of overtime and shootout procedures. What the GMs left with, however, were a few minor tweaks and suggestions — namely, subtle changes to faceoffs and the changing of ends in OT.

Other minor ideas that may be implemented moving forward:

— GMs expressed interest in seeing more kicked-in goals allowed. NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly noted this is a rules-interpretation issue; therefore, it doesn’t require approval from the Competition Committee.

— Apparently, analyzing prospects outside the annual NHL Draft Combine has been a bone of contention among GMs, and they’re looking to address it. Here’s more, from

GMs are concerned that teams are bringing in too many prospects for medical testing and interviews in the time after the official scouting combine run by NHL Central Scouting, which takes place in Toronto in late May.

Washington Capitals GM George McPhee said the combine was designed so prospects didn’t have to visit multiple teams.

“We originally came up with a combine to streamline that and have all the players go to one place, work out and you get the results,” McPhee said. “We’ve improved the combine over the years to make sure we’re getting the results we need.

“Ideally what we want is one combine where everybody gets their information and it’s equal for [all] teams.”

Finally, it’s worth noting GMs received Bettman and Daly’s review of the 2014 Sochi Olympics, but the issue of future participation wasn’t actually discussed. Daly stated in February that the NHL expects to come to a decision within six months.

  1. President Charles Logan - Mar 12, 2014 at 6:37 PM

    Was hoping they would eliminate two ridiculous things……

    the shootout and the fact that the loser of overtime actually gets a point .

    • 7mantel - Mar 12, 2014 at 6:58 PM

      Agree !

  2. letsgolightning - Mar 12, 2014 at 6:39 PM

    Gotta say, I’m a little confused as to why they want to allow more kicked-in goals. I know the league always wants more scoring to create a better product, but there have to be other ways to allow that.

    The current “distinct kicking motion” interpretation still leaves a lot to the discretion of the replay guys in Toronto, but fans can more or less tell whether there was a *kick* there or not. Weakening this rule (or its interpretation) has the possibility of pissing off a lot of fans if they don’t call it consistently across the season (and let alone into the playoffs).

  3. kicksave1980 - Mar 12, 2014 at 6:48 PM

    I still really hate the trapezoid, but I would really love to hear a GM at this yearly meeting stand up and say “I really love the vacation, fellas, but the game is fine. We don’t have to meet up in Boca Raton and screw with it every year.” It isn’t broken…leave it alone for once.

  4. tmoore4075 - Mar 13, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    Should have gone 10 minutes of OT, and switch sides. I think that helps reduce the number of shootouts. If you aren’t going to go with the 3 point system, then OT needs to be tweaked more than just switching sides.

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