As expected, the NHL and owners and other high-falutin’ assholes ratified the NHL’s new collective bargaining agreement today. The most interesting aspects of the new CBA deal with changes to the rules of hockey. Check ‘em out here.
Going through them:
- Smaller neutral zone: Moving the blue lines closer together increases the area of both attacking zones. Eventually, there will be a single blue line in the middle of the rink, effectively killing any semblance of defense, save for the goalie.
- Nets further back: Makes it harder for people to skate behind the goals. Presumably, so there are more frequent high-speed collisions behind the twine. Mark one for the fans.
- Restricted goaltender puck-handling: They can only touch the puck while it’s inside that crazy trapezoid behind the net. Masters of the big stick like Martin Brodeur aren’t gonna’ be too happy with that one. Oh, that’s right, they don’t have a reason to bitch because they’re all a bunch of pussies who got crushed by the greedy owners. Now I remember.
- No real red line: A two-line pass will now have to traverse both blue lines to be illegal. Why even keep the red line at all? Just have a dot in the middle of the rink for faceoffs. Score one for the ice painter guy who will continue to enjoy job security.
- Tag-up offsides: If you’re first in, hit the blue line before touching the puck. Seems simple enough. Yeah, simple enough to fuck your up-ice rush. Bonus: more shredded leg joints from having to stop suddenly.
- Shootout: Cop out! It’s sure to raise the level of anticipation in the crowd at the end of a tie game, but it’s a pretty shitty way to end things. It takes the entire team out of competition, effectively putting the “I” in team.
- Other boring shit: Well… yeah. They mostly have to do with officiating and stuff like that. As if the refs and linesmen are now—all of a fucking sudden—going to be consistent with their calls? Please.
The season starts on October 5th.