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ECIHL Rules Emphasis

ECIHL Rules Emphasis



The Emerald Coast Ice Hockey League (ECIHL) operates under USA Hockey rules and expects all members and players to be familiar with the current “Official Rules of Ice Hockey” as published by USA Hockey.   This document places emphasis on specific rules that are in effect during all ECIHL sponsored events.  USA Hockey’s rules and any specific league rules have been developed for the protection and well-being of all participants and spectators.

All rules remain in effect for all participants before, during, and after the playing of any game/event sponsored by the ECIHL.  

The primary purpose of our league is fun and enjoyment. Good sportsmanship IS REQUIRED of all participants. There is no justification for unsportsmanlike conduct by players or spectators regardless of the situation. Team representatives, players and spectators may be ejected and possibly suspended from further participation, including spectating, due to unsportsmanlike acts. Therefore, team representatives, players and spectators who become upset before, during or after a game should remove themselves from the situation.


Unsportsmanlike Conduct:  We believe that unsportsmanlike actions are detrimental to League play. USA Hockey governs this by Rule 601:  These illegal actions include but are not limited to: 

a.  Verbal or Physical abuse of an Official, player, or spectator.

b.  Refusing to immediately proceed to the penalty bench, or abide by an officials decision.

c.  Using obscene profane or abusive language to any person anywhere in the rink.

d.  Taunting or inciting an opponent.

THE USA Hockey penalty for these offenses can be a Minor, Misconduct, or Game Misconduct.  A Match penalty will be accessed if any player deliberately inflicts physical harm or attempts to do so toward any Official, or other player, or spectator.

Game Misconduct:  USA Hockey Rule 404 (b): The ECIHL takes seriously an ejection resulting from Game Misconduct penalties.  USA Hockey defines it as an ejection for the remainder of the game and a suspension from the team’s next scheduled game.

An ECIHL player that receives a third misconduct/ ejection penalty in a season will be subject to a Penalty Review and Grievance(PRG) Committee hearing and will receive a minimum of an additional 2 game suspension(3 total) before participating in future ECIHL events.

Fighting:  Fighting has no place in recreational hockey and will be strictly enforced.  USA Hockey covers this under Rule 615:  The penalty for this offense is a 5min major and a game misconduct; an additional minor shall be accessed to any player who starts or instigates fighting.

All fighting game misconduct penalties will be reviewed by the PRG Committee and additional sanctions may be added to the penalty.

An ECIHL player that receives a second fighting misconduct/ ejection penalty in a season will be subject to a PRG Committee hearing and receive a minimum of an additional 5 game suspension before participating in future ECIHL events.  A subsequent fighting misconduct will deem a suspension for the rest of the season at a minimum.   Un-served suspensions by the PRG Committee do carry over to the following season if applicable.

Helmet Violations:  In 2011, USA Hockey added specific emphasis and description to penalties of removing a Helmet in an altercation. USA Hockey Rule 615 (c):  Note that a game misconduct shall be assessed to any player whose helmet or facemask comes off their head during an altercation, and a Match Penalty shall be assessed to a player who deliberately removes his (or an opponent’s helmet or facemask prior to or during an altercation.

The ECIHL expects all players to keep their helmets on at all times when on the ice surface for safety reasons.  USA Hockey Rule 304 (e): states that in Adult classifications if a helmet comes off during play, that player may not resume play until the helmet has been properly replaced.  A minor penalty for equipment violation shall be assessed not conforming to this rule.


PARTICIPATION - Any involvement in ECIHL activities such as spectating, officiating, playing, and coaching.

TEAM REPRESENTATIVE - A person designated as team leader, also referred to as team captain. This person can be either a player or a non-player. This is the person with whom the Board of Directors communicates the league information. Team representatives are required to inform team members of the rules that govern the league.

PLAYER - A person who actively participates in the game (even if sitting on the bench) and who is on the official team roster.

ICE SUPERVISOR(s) – The Referee(s) for any B-League game.  In the absence of a Referee, any member of the Board of Directors or those individuals designated by the Board of Directors (for C-League games).  Ice Supervisors are required to have current USA Hockey certification as appropriate.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS – Those league members elected to serve on the Board of Directors in accordance with the ECIHL By-Laws.

PENALTY REVIEW AND GRIEVANCE COMMITTEE – A committee designated by the ECIHL Board of Directors to meet as needed to adjudicate misconduct penalties/discipline issues that require Board Action.  The decision of this committee is submitted to the Board for approval, and the Board reserves the right to impose additional sanctions for any offense.

FIGHTING – USA Hockey’s definition is “ the actual throwing of a punch at a player (closed fist) that makes contact with an opponent”. 

EJECTION - To be removed from a league game.  Players who are ejected from the game must leave the playing area within one minute of when the official ejects them. Ejected players are to leave the facility as soon as they gather their belongings (these are important factors that are considered by the Board of Directors when deciding whether the player should be suspended). Grievances may be submitted in accordance with the procedures outlined in the ECIHL By-Laws.

EJECTION FORM - A form filled out by the ejecting official(s) describing the incident. If you witness an act and wish to comment, you may do so by locating the ice supervisor and asking them for the form. If you cannot locate the ejection form your written report (e-mail is acceptable) will be accepted by the Chair of the Board of Directors.

PROBATION -  A disciplinary action that may be awarded by the Penalty Review and Grievance Committee for a time period up to 2 years.  A player who is on probation would be immediately subject to additional sanctions if receiving an additional game misconduct/ejection during the set period of probation.

SUSPENSION - To be eliminated from future games for a specific period of time. A player who is on suspension is not allowed to participate in any ECIHL-sponsored event.