Friday, January 4, 2013

6.15.4 A team successfully requesting a team timeout when they have none remaining. Penalty will be assessed to the Captain.

Today’s rule is a Delay of Game major penalty. It is new in the current version of the rules. It actually looks very similar to another rule, which is successfully getting the jam called off when not lead Jammer; an Illegal Procedure major. That rule has bothered many people for years, simply because if a jammer is not lead, then the referees shouldn’t be calling off the jam. While there is lots of merit to that argument, the other side of the coin is that the referees have a lot going on, and a jammer who is not lead should be responsible for their own actions and not attempt to call off the jam. The same logic seems to apply to today’s rule. Basically, because timeouts may be requested within even a second of a jam being started, referees don’t always have the luxury of time to look at a scoreboard, or a whiteboard somewhere to see if a team has any timeouts left. If a team signals a timeout, then a referee is going to call a timeout. If a team has no timeouts left, this can cause a lot of confusion, scrambling, and of course, a delay of the game. Therefore, if a team has no more timeouts left (they get three team timeouts per game), and they request a timeout and a timeout is called, the captain of that team will receive a major penalty. This means teams need to pay close attention to how many timeouts they have used.

Since this rule specifies the penalty only going to the captain, if the captain is already in the penalty box, they will receive an extra minute on top of the time they are already there for. If the captain is no longer in the game, the offending team gets to choose a new captain. If they refuse to choose a captain, then the head referee may choose which skater will receive this penalty.