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Situation 1

A player hooks the stick of another player causing him to lose possession of the puck. Is this a legal action?

No. Rule Reference 623(a).

The fact he hooked the stick indicates that he impeded the opponent’s progress and a penalty is warranted.

However, a stick lift or stick check where the focus is on the puck and preventing the opponent from playing the puck are both considered good defensive plays.

Situation 2

An attacking player is skating toward his opponent’s goal, preparing to release a shot on goal. Just as he releases the shot he is hooked from behind and falls to the ice. The Referee does not signal a penalty infraction and, at the next stoppage, explains that the player got a good shot off, thus no penalty was assessed. Was the Referee correct in this interpretation?

No. Rule Reference 623(a).

Provided the player was impeded as a result of the hooking action, a penalty must be assessed. Even though a shot was attempted, that shot may not have had the same effectiveness that it would have if the hooking did not occur, so a competitive advantage was gained as a result of the hook.

Situation 3

What would be examples of an infraction warranting a major penalty for hooking?

Rule Reference 623(a).

1) A player is hooked around the upper body, and the offending player recklessly endangers the opponent by steering them dangerously into the boards or goal frame.

2) A player is hooked between the legs and the offending player uses the blade of the stick to recklessly endanger the opponent. This could also be penalized under spearing if the toe of the blade is used.