At the 2014 IIHF Annual Congress in Minsk that starts on Friday, IIHF members will discuss about changes for the IIHF Rule Book 2014-2018.
The IIHF Rule Book is revised every four years and for the 2014 IIHF Annual Congress 86 proposals for 57 rules came together from five committees and several IIHF member national associations.
Some major proposals that will be individually discussed and voted on include:
- to standardize the dimensions of the ice surface
- to move the goal line closer to the end of the rink (from 4 to 3.3 metres)
- to move the blue line in order to standardize and also increase the offensive zones
- to remove the “cheater piece” of goalkeepers’ catching gloves
- to double the penalty for goalkeeper interference to 2+2 minutes
- to penalize any deliberate grabbing, twisting or holding of an opponent’s head with a major penalty
- to forbid base drums at ice rinks in addition to air horns and whistles already mentioned in the current rule book
- that goalkeepers cannot freeze the puck if the shot originates from outside the blue line
There will also be controversial major rule proposals for discussions such as proposals to reinstate the red-line offside or to introduce touch icing.
Several rule changes determined as minor and housekeeping will be voted en bloc including the definition of an ice surface as surface made of frozen water, that players taller than two metres can request exceptions for a longer shaft of the stick, to allow and include one-piece catching gloves, a new rule for slew-footing to distinguish from the tripping rule and a new rule for broken sticks that allows to get new sticks to be handed only at the player bench except for goalkeepers, who can receive a new goalkeeper stick from a teammate.
The 2014 IIHF Annual Congress will also debate about changes in the IIHF Statutes & Bylaws and regulations. New versions of these and the Rule Book will be produced this upcoming summer. Congress will also allocate the 2018 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship with Denmark and Latvia as applicants (see separate story) and the tournaments for the upcoming season.