By Dave Zednik, IHOA Registrar
QUESTION: The first principle of the Standard of Play is “the use of the stick will be limited to only playing the puck.” Does this mean that anytime a player uses his stick and makes contact with the opponent, a penalty must be called?
ANSWER: No. Even though the principle encourages players to only play the puck with the stick, an actual rule must still have been violated in order for a penalty to be assessed. There may be instances where the stick may contact the opponent’s body or stick, but no competitive advantage had been gained by an act that is in violation of the rules.
It is important to recognize that, in essence, stick to lower stick contact that prevents the opponent from playing the puck could be considered to be making an effort to play the puck.