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NHL wants to impose head-shots rule now

Wednesday, 03.17.2010 / 1:51 AM / News

Associated Press

TORONTO (AP) -The NHL wants to adopt a new rule against blindside hits to the head before the end of this season.

The league is hoping to fast-track the proposed rule and is preparing a DVD package after a number of players suffered concussions this season. The highlight package will illustrate what would, and wouldn't, be allowed under a proposed rule change adopted by general managers at meetings in Florida last week.

The NHL plans to circulate the highlight package to all 30 teams within the next week or so, according to the reports.

"It's a process that has never been done before in the season," NHL senior vice-president of hockey operations Colin Campbell told the Globe and Mail in a story published online early Wednesday. "But this is so important an issue that if we can possibly avoid just one concussion, we should do this."

In order to get the new rule in place, the NHL needs to get the players, coaches, management and officials involved, Campbell added. Also, the NHL board of governors would have the final say on any change.

Meanwhile, deputy commissioner Bill Daly told the Toronto Star the new rule could be in place by the end of the regular season and in time for the playoffs.

"We are working to see if the new rules can be implemented as quickly as possible, and perhaps as early as before the end of the season," Daly said. "We are proceeding on the basis (of) doing what is best for the game and the players on a responsible timetable within the parameters of our legal and contractual obligations."

It means a lot to us, we're very excited. We're looking to continue to build on [our] top core talent of young players. It's just a great opportunity for us to really build high.

— Panthers vice president of hockey operations Travis Viola after Florida won the No. 1 pick in the NHL Draft Lottery