Over the course of the offseason, the NHL, somewhat quietly, introduced a new rule to crackdown on faceoff violations. Now that the preseason is here, it's become glaringly evident that essentially no one knows how it works.
In games between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators, as well as the Washington Capitals and New Jersey Devils on Monday night, viewers witnessed a remarkable amount of penalties they'd never seen before, and took to Twitter to voice their grievances.
The definition of the league's handling of faceoffs, per the NHL's rule book, is as follows:
"There will be a stricter enforcement of the face-off procedure - especially with respect to the markings inside the face-off circle. Under section 76.4, the players will be instructed to set, so they will stand squarely facing their opponents' end of the rink, and clear of the ice markings (where applicable). the defensive Player will be instructed to set (skates and stick) then, the offense Player will be instructed to set (skates and stick)."
It's not off to a great start.