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Monday, May 30, 2005

nhl- The Experiment Begins

I brought this up last week that the NHL will be "testing" some rule and equipment changes. What do you think, will the NHL ever get it right?

TORONTO (CP) - There are going to be some strange goings on at a small rink near the airport here next week, and the NHL is inviting its general managers and coaches to take it all in.
Goalies will be trying to stop pucks while wearing equipment smaller than they usually wear, and they'll be standing at times in front of over-sized nets. Long passes that would normally be offside will be allowed in some of the drills.
The league is calling it a research and development camp, and it has recruited overage juniors who are free agents plus a handful of college skaters for tests and scrimmages over three days.
The camp begins Monday, which as coincidence would have it is the first anniversary of the last NHL game, Tampa Bay's 2-1 win over Calgary in Game 7 of the 2004 Stanley Cup final.
There has been plenty of talk during the lockout, which wiped out the entire 2004-2005 season, about opening up the game to more offence whenever play resumes under a new collective bargaining agreement, and now it's time to test on ice the various suggestions.
"We'll be focusing on rules changes that have been brought forth over the last year and a half," says Colin Campbell, the league's executive vice-president and director of hockey operations. "We understand certain changes have to be made but we don't want knee-jerk solutions.
"We don't think the game is as bad on the ice as some people make it out to be. That's a side effect of our problems off the ice. But we do understand some changes have to be made."