Wednesday, November 2, 2011

‎3.7.4 Each skater participating in a bout must visibly display a unique (with relation to her own team) number on the back of her uniform.

Today's rule explains that numbers are required. 3.7.3, which was covered back in April, explains that names are optional. Numbers are not optional. This is because officials use a player's number exclusively to communicate penalties and other instructions (per 9.2.5.2.4). And since numbers are used exclusively, skaters must not share a number with anyone else on their team. Similar numbers, while not particularly pleasant to officials, are legal. For example, a team may have a 12, a 112, and a 0112. Annoying? Yes. Legal? Yes. So long as a skater's number is unique compared to her team then she is fine. Two teams may have the exact same numbers as each other and that is still legal, so long as each team has no number repeats.

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