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Rule 601 | Abuse of Officials and Other Misconduct

Rule 601 | Abuse of Officials and Other Misconduct

(Note) For the enforcement of this rule, the following guidelines shall apply.

A bench minor penalty shall be assessed for actions that occur on or in the immediate vicinity of the player’s bench (off the ice).

A minor penalty or misconduct penalty should be assessed for actions that occur on the playing surface or in the penalty bench area.

(a) A minor penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct shall be assessed to any player who commits the following actions:

  1. Challenges or disputes the rulings of any official.
  2. Taunts or incites an opponent.
  3. Creates a disturbance during the game.
  4. Shoots the puck after the whistle, if in the opinion of the Official such shot was avoidable.

A misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player who persists in such conduct and any further dispute by the same player shall result in a game misconduct penalty being assessed. 

(Note) If occurring after the game, the above actions shall be initially penalized as a misconduct penalty.

(b) A bench minor penalty shall be assessed to any team whose players or team officials commit the following actions while on the player’s bench:

  1. Unsportsmanlike conduct or disputing the rulings of any official by an unidentified player or Team Official.
  2. Using obscene, profane or abusive language to any person.
  3. Using the name of any official in a loud or abusive manner.
  4. Throwing any object onto the playing area during the progress of the game or during a stoppage of play.
  5. Banging the boards with a stick or other object, including skates or arms, after a body check regardless as to whether the check is being penalized. It is deemed to be unsportsmanlike conduct and should be penalized when done as a means of escalating dangerous and/or unnecessary physical play where there is no intent to legally gain possession of the puck.
  6. Using threatening or abusive language or gestures directed at an opponent.
  7. Interfering in any non-physical manner with any game official, including off-ice officials, in the performance of their duties.

(Note) If any of the above actions are committed by a player who is on the players’ bench and is readily identifiable, they shall be assessed a misconduct penalty under sub-section (c) of this rule.

(c) A misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player who commits the following actions:

  1. Persists in any conduct where they were previously assessed a minor penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.
  2. Using obscene, profane or abusive language to any person anywhere in the rink before, during or after the game.
  3. Intentionally knocking or shooting the puck out of the reach of an official who is retrieving it during a stoppage of play.
  4. Not proceeding directly and immediately to the penalty bench or to the dressing room, after being penalized and ordered to do so by the officials (equipment shall be delivered to him by a teammate, if necessary).
  5. Entering or remaining in the Referee’s Crease, unless invited to do so.
  6. Interfering in any non-physical manner with any on-ice or off-ice official in the performance of their duties.
  7. Touches or holds any official with their hand or stick.

  8. Attempts to continue an altercation after being ordered to stop.

  9. Intentionally bangs the boards or protective glass or goal frame with their stick or any other object at any time in an unsportsmanlike manner (when not done in protest of an official’s decision).

  10. Shoots or bats the puck outside of the playing area during a stoppage of play (when not done in protest of an official’s decision or in the direction of a spectator).

(d) A game misconduct penalty shall be assessed to any player or team official who is guilty of the following actions:

  1. Persists in any course of conduct for which he has previously been assessed a misconduct penalty (player) or a continuation of abuse of officials after being assessed a bench minor penalty (Team Official). If clearly done as a means of continued abuse, the game

    misconduct penalty may be assessed in lieu of a 2nd bench minor when done after the initial bench minor has expired.

  2. Uses an obscene gesture anywhere in the rink before, during or after the game.
  3. Bangs the boards, goal frame or protective glass in protest of an official’s decision.

  4. Interferes in any physical manner with any on-ice or off-ice official, in performing their duties including resisting the linesman during an altercation.

  5. A player who receives their second misconduct penalty (for any rule infraction) during the same game shall be assessed a game misconduct penalty in lieu of the second misconduct penalty.

  6. Physically interferes with a spectator.

  7. Shoots or bats the puck outside of the playing area during a stoppage of play when done in protest of an official’s decision.

  8. Attempts to intimidate or physically contacts an on-ice or off-ice official by throwing a stick, water bottle, puck or any other object in the general direction of a game official.

  9. Shoots the puck in the general direction of an on-ice official, or in the direction of a spectator during a stoppage of play.

(Note) A match penalty shall be assessed to any player who shoots the puck directly at an official or spectator in a manner that recklessly endangers the official or spectator under Rule 601(e.2)

(e) A match penalty shall be assessed to any player or team official who commits the following actions:

  1. Applies deliberate physical force or attempts to inflict physical harm to any game official, including off-ice officials.
  2. Behaving in any manner that is critically detrimental to the conducting of the game, including but not limited to spitting at an opponent, spectator, game or team official, or verbally threatening or intimidating a Game Official, opposing Team Official or opposing player with physical contact or harm.
  3. Uses language that is hateful or discriminatory in nature anywhere in the rink before, during or after the game.

(Note) The officials are required to immediately file a game report and the offending player/team official is suspended until their case has been dealt with by the proper authorities. Appropriate discipline will be determined using the USA Hockey Standardized Discipline Policy (see Preface). If the incident was reported to, but not heard by the official(s), the officials are required to notify the coach of the offending team and submit an incident report to the Proper Authorities immediately following the game outlining what was reported to them.

(Note 2) Any match penalty assessed under this rule must be reported via written game report by the officials no later than 24 hours following the game. The official(s) should also provide a verbal report to the USA Hockey District Referee-in-Chief within 48 hours.

(f) The use of tobacco products, vaping products or alcoholic beverages by any player or team official is prohibited in the rink area, including the bench areas and off-ice official area. A warning shall be issued by the Referee for the first offense by any participant and any subsequent violations by the same team shall result in a game misconduct penalty being assessed.