(a) Upon the Referee’s signal prior to the start of a period or immediately following any stoppage of play, the visiting team shall have five seconds to complete any player substitutions. After the visiting player substitutions, the
home team shall have 5 seconds to complete any player substitutions (See Glossary – Line Change Procedure). Once all player substitutions have been made, all players must take their positions for the ensuing face-off.
If there is any undue delay by either team in placing their lineup on the ice or changing players, the Referee shall warn the offending team. Any subsequent delay by the same team will result in a minor penalty for delay of game. (Also see Rule 633, Refusing to Start Play). Both teams must place the full number of players on the ice to which they are entitled to prior to the face-off.
Once the line change procedure has been completed, no additional player substitutions shall be permitted until the face-off has been completed legally and play has resumed, except when a penalty or penalties are imposed that affect the on-ice strength of either or both teams. This may include penalties imposed following the completion of the line change and prior to the face-off, or due to a penalty assessed for a face-off violation.
(b) Players may be changed at any time during play from the players’ bench, provided that the player or players leaving the ice shall always be at the players’ bench and out of the play before any change is made. If either the player entering or leaving the game deliberately plays the puck in any manner or makes physical contact with an opposing player while the retiring player is actually on the ice, or causes their team to gain a competitive advantage, then a bench minor penalty for “too many players on the ice” shall be assessed.
If, in the course of a substitution, either the player entering the play or the player retiring is struck by the puck accidentally, the play will not be stopped and no penalty shall be called.
(c) A player serving a penalty on the penalty bench, whose penalty has expired, must proceed by way of the ice and be at their players’ bench before any substitution can be made (except when a major or match penalty is imposed in Adult Classifications under Rule 403(d) or 405(a)).
(d) If there are less than two minutes remaining in regulation time or any time during overtime and a minor or bench minor penalty is imposed for deliberate illegal substitution, such as too many players on the ice or leaving the penalty bench too soon, a penalty shot/optional minor penalty shall be assessed against the offending team.
(Note) The intent of this rule is to award a penalty shot/optional minor only when the extra player(s) are “deliberately” put on the ice. When a substitution error is made and there are too many players on the ice, the normal bench minor penalty shall be assessed regardless of the time remaining in the game.