NCHL Ice Hockey League Rules
NCHL RULES & REGULATIONS
The Non-Contact Hockey League is governed by the rules and regulations that are outlined in the Hockey Canada Rulebook unless noted otherwise below. The NCHL would like to place emphasis on the following rules:
TEAM ROSTERS AND PLAYER ELIGIBILITY
1. All players must complete and sign the Player Registration and Liability Waiver prior to any game play (this link is team specific and available from your GM).
2. All players must be a minimum of 18 years of age to qualify for league registration.
3. Any player is permitted to play for multiple teams and multiple divisions.
4. Each player must play 1/3 of the teams originally scheduled regular season games for their team in order to qualify to play for that team in the playoffs.
a. Any Player that has the minimum amount of games played (1/3 of the teams originally scheduled games) for a team on their roster is eligible to play in net
b. Any player playing for a club team will be credited 0.5 games towards higher division teams in that club. Teams will only be allowed to use a maximum of 3 players from a club team in playoffs. Once a club player plays for a team in playoffs they are not allowed to play for any of the other club teams if qualified. To qualify for a club team a player must have played a minimum of 3 games for that team.
c. There will be absolutely NO exceptions made to the number of qualified games required for playoffs
a. All goalies must play a minimum of 1/3 of the total team games originally scheduled to be qualified for playoffs.
b. Barring Injury or a goalie(s) being unavailable for playoffs the GM of a team will consult with their Account Manager for a spare goalie for playoffs that is to be approved by the League. This goalie will be a current goalie in the NCHL from the same division or lower unless an exception is made after a review process by league admin.
c. Any player who has only played goalie and has not played out must have a minimum number of games played to qualify for playoffs or will need to be approved by the league –Minimum 24hrs
d. Any Goalie listed as a qualified goalie on the team roster will not be permitted to play out if an approved spare goalie is brought in to play playoffs.
e. All Goalies that a team wants to use for a season must be on the team roster prior to playoffs or team must send a spare goalie request a minimum of 24 hours prior to playoff game so a review process can be completed, and goalie added to team roster.
5. Players must be prepared to produce picture ID upon the request of league officials at any league sanctioned game (regular season or playoffs). Any player failing to produce valid ID upon request shall be considered an illegal player and asked to leave the ice surface. If the player refuses to leave the ice surface it will result in an immediate forfeit for their team.
6. Any number of players can be added to the roster before the start of a regular season game providing they have previously filled out the Player Registration and Liability Waiver.
1. Team rep is responsible to fill out accurate roster lists during warm-up and initial the game sheet once completed. All rosters are final at the end of the game and no player adjustments will be made to the stats online once the game sheet has been entered unless this is a data input error.
2. Goals and penalties can be adjusted once stats are online by filling out the stats correction link https://crsdc.formstack.com/forms/stats_correction_form within 14 days of game. All stats are final after the 14-day grace period.
DIVISION REALIGNMENT AND SCHEDULE ADJUSTMENT
1. The league administration reserves the right to change the division of any team at any time during the season to ensure divisional parity.
2. Any team that is moved to a different division due to realignment will keep their schedule wherever possible.
3. Realignment will happen whenever needed throughout the season.
· Realignment candidates will be primarily identified (but not exclusively) based on the following criteria:
o Win % of .800 / .200
o Goal Differential +/- 4 per game
4. All scheduled games are subject to arena ice availability. In some cases, due to mechanical difficulties or administrative error, facilities are forced to cancel bookings with the NCHL. The League reserves the right to reschedule any effected games to the best available alternate booking at the time of cancellation. Following any schedule change, team GM’s will be notified as soon as possible and are responsible for ensuring the new game information is distributed amongst their teammates.
5. Due to the ongoing necessity of divisional realignment, seeding of teams prior to the playoff season will be determined in order of the following:
1. Divisional win percentage (only games played against teams that are in the current division will be included in the divisional win percentage)
2. Fewer penalty minutes
3. Goal differential
4. Coin toss
EQUIPMENT AND UNIFORMS
1. All participating members of the league are required to wear full equipment (i.e. CSA approved helmet, shin pads, elbow pads, etc.) while on the ice.
2. Shoulder pads and facial protection (i.e. cage and/or visor) are highly recommended but not required.
3. All teams are required to have both matching Dark (Home) and Light (Away) team jerseys (Goalies are exempt)
a. A plain jersey consistent in color with the base color of their team’s jerseys will be accepted as a team jersey. Jersey must have the team logo, team name, NCHL logo, or a plain front.
b. Any jersey with another team logo, or dissimilar in color will not be acceptable
c. All players must be wearing team jerseys before the 4th week of the season.
d. Any players not wearing team jerseys after the 4th week of the season will have a jersey violation marked on the game sheet for that team. At 3 violations the last game played will be a forfeit. All player points will be removed, and all other stats will be recorded as usual.
e. Team representative will be notified by email for every jersey infraction after game sheets are received.
f. Club teams must select 1 style and logo of jersey to wear and this must be consistent throughout the year and will constitute as a jersey violation if another variation is used.
4. All jerseys must have distinct contrasting 8”-12” numbers clearly marked (sewn, screened, sublimated, or heat sync) on the back
-Taped numbers are not permitted.
-No number is not permitted (Goalies are exempt)
-Cannot have the same number as another player except if the other player is a Goalie
5. Team representatives must ensure that all players’ names and numbers are clearly recorded on the game sheet during warm up. All rosters are final at the end of the game and no adjustments will be made to the roster stats online unless this is a data input error when entering the game sheet.
6. Special arrangements may be made between team representatives and league administration to allow their team to play with one uniform set while their second set is in production.
a. Teams with only one set of uniforms are responsible for checking for uniform conflicts.
b. Visiting teams that wear a similar color to their opponents’ home jersey must contact the home teams GM to ask if they would be able to wear their white jerseys for that game.
c. If the Home team is also in possession of only one set of jerseys (same or close in colour) the visiting team will be responsible for acquiring a temporary set of white jerseys.
d. The League office may be able to provide a loaner set of jerseys based on availability, if not, teams must find their own. Please contact team account manager at least 1 week prior to the game for which jerseys are required.
1. Body Checking is prohibited.
2. Incidental contact may or may not result in a penalty based upon the discretion of the on-ice officials
FIGHTING AND/OR THE ABUSE OF OFFICIALS
1. Fighting is prohibited.
2. Receiving a Fighting Major will result in an indefinite suspension.
3. Fighting Majors will be called based on the discretion of the on-ice officials. The NCHL Director of Player Safety will review all fighting majors.
4. Any player who leaves the players’ bench in the midst of an on-ice altercation will be suspended for the next game and will be placed on probation for the remainder of the current season.
5. Verbal abuse of any official will result in the assessment of a 10-minute misconduct penalty based upon the discretion of the on-ice officials.
6. Any Physical abuse or threat of Physical abuse to any league officials will result in immediate expulsion from the League.
TEAM PENALTY ACCUMULATION
1. Teams shall not accumulate greater than 5 penalties per game (Infractions i.e. double-minor counts as
2). For any team’s 6th, 7th and 8th penalty, excluding Tier 1 (see 4-Tiered Rules Section):
a. A penalty shot will be awarded to the opposing team
b. Penalized players shall not be permitted to take a penalty shot; In addition, the offending player will serve the duration of their penalty in the penalty box and their team will play shorthanded.
c. If off-setting/coincidental penalties are called, NO penalty shot will be awarded, and the penalties will still count in the overall penalty accumulation.
d. If a 6th, 7th, or 8th penalty is called, and a goal is scored, if prior to the face off following the penalty shot, if the team shooting takes a penalty prior to the face off will result in the goal being disallowed and the penalty being considered coincidental
2. A 9th penalty by any team in any given game will result in immediate forfeiture of the game, unless it comes as a coincidental penalty
3. Penalty shots are to be taken by the player that the infraction occurred against unless that is not possible due to injury
4. Teams shall not accumulate greater than 30 minutes in penalty minutes per game. Any penalty beyond the 30-minute accumulation limit will result in immediate forfeiture of the game by the offending team. Only 1-10-minute misconduct a player receives in a game will count toward the game, player and team Penalty Accumulation.
5. By forfeiting, the offending team relinquishes all individual player points recorded in the game resulting in a win for the opposing team. All penalties will remain intact.
6. All team and individual player points scored by the opposing team will remain intact and be recorded.
7. If both teams exceed the accumulation limit simultaneously the score will be recorded as 0-0 and points will not be recorded for either team, all penalties will be recorded.
8. Teams shall not accumulate greater than 300 penalty minutes during the winter season and 150 penalty minutes during the summer season. Exceeding the limit will result in forfeiture of the remainder of the NCHL season including playoffs.
9. Teams with less than a full season played will have their penalty minute limits reduced in the same percentage of 5 penalties per amount of games initially scheduled.
INDIVIDUAL PLAYER PENALTY ACCUMULATION
1. Individual players may not accumulate greater than 2 penalties (infractions) per game. A 3rd penalty will result in ejection from the game. A 4th individual player penalty will result in ejection from the game, and a 10 min league assessed penalty, after which the offending player may be suspended for a minimum of 1 game. This additional 10 min from the league will not occur if the 4th individual penalty is already a 10 min penalty.
2. All players who receive 3 penalties in 1 game will be sent home after the 3rd penalty with no extra penalty assessed unless;
· The 3rd penalty is a double minor, major or match, then the player will end up will with 4 or more penalties. That player will be assessed a 10 min game misconduct from the league for receiving 4 or more penalties in 1 game.
· The number of 3 penalty ejections for each player will be documented and may result in discipline from the league for players with multiple 3 penalty incidents.
3. Winter Season (Playoffs included)
a. Any player who accumulates a total equal or greater than 30 penalty minutes during the winter season will be suspended for the next game.
b. Any player who accumulates a total equal or greater than 40 penalty minutes during the winter season will be suspended for the next two games.
c. Any player who accumulates a total equal or greater than 50 penalty minutes during the winter season will be suspended indefinitely from the NCHL.
d. Teams with less than a full season played will have their player penalty minute limits reduced in the same percentage of allowable minutes before suspension as teams with full seasons.
4. Summer Season (Playoffs included)
a. Any player who accumulates a total equal or greater than 30 penalty minutes during the summer season will be suspended for the next two games.
b. Any player who accumulates a total equal or greater than 40 penalty minutes during the summer season will be suspended indefinitely from the NCHL.
c. Teams with less than a full season played will have their player penalty minute limits reduced in the same percentage of allowable minutes before suspension as teams with full seasons.
5. All penalty minutes assessed during the regular season will carry over to the playoffs of that season.
MAJOR & MATCH PENALTIES AND EJECTIONS
1. Any player who incurs a single 5-minute major penalty will automatically receive a 10-minute misconduct penalty, will be ejected from the game and will be suspended for a set determined amount of games set out by the Director of Player Safety.
2. Any player who incurs a single 5-minute match penalty will receive a 10-minute misconduct and assessed when the game sheet is entered online. The 10-minute misconduct will not be added on the game sheet during game play and will not be added to a team’s penalty total accumulation during the game.
3. Any player who incurs a 10-minute gross misconduct penalty, will be ejected from the game and will be suspended for a set determined amount of games set out by the Director of Player Safety.
4. Any player who has been ejected from a game must leave the ice and/or bench/penalty box immediately, after which any remaining penalty time for the offending player is to be served by another teammate that was on the ice at the time of the offence.
5. Any player who has been ejected from the game could accumulate 10 minutes towards their total individual player penalty minutes, which will count toward the accumulation of the individual player penalty minute threshold/maximum as well as the team accumulation for that game.
6. Any player who has been ejected from a game may be suspended for a minimum of 1 game.
7. Any player assessed 4 penalties will also receive a 10-minute misconduct penalty (Unless the 4th penalty is a 10-minute penalty). This misconduct will be added after the game and will not count against the team for that game.
8. Any player who is ejected from a game for whatever the reason must leave the ice surface immediately and without further incident. The player is not permitted back on the ice, the bench or any adjacent area where he will have contact with the team or the officials.
9. Any fans disrupting normal NCHL game play or using abusive or profane language directed toward players and/or officials shall be, at the first stoppage of play from the time of the offence, removed from the viewing area. A Delay of Game Bench Minor Penalty shall be assessed the team by which the offending person(s) are affiliated. On Ice Officials shall retire to the referee crease and communicate only with the offending team’s Captain, and game play is not to be resumed until such time as the offending person(s) have left the viewing area. Should the offending person(s) refuse to leave, Refusing to Start Play procedure shall be initiated as per Hockey Canada Rule 10.14(e), and the offending person(s) shall be treated as a player for the purposes of this rule.
SUSPENSIONS AND PROBATION
1. Any player who has been ejected from a game and/or suspended will remain on probation for 1 year from the date of the offence.
2. Any player who is currently on probation as a result of a suspension and/or any other violation of the league rules may be:
· Suspended for any number of games at the discretion of the Director of Player Safety during the regular season including playoffs and/or
· Permanently expelled from the league
3. Any individual player suspensions incurred will carry over into the playoffs and/or the next consecutive season.
4. Any player who receives an indefinite suspension for any reason will remain suspended indefinitely pending a disciplinary reinstatement hearing.
· Anyone suspended indefinitely from the NCHL must wait a minimum 1 calendar year prior to asking for a review from the Director of Player Safety
· Reinstatement hearings are granted at the discretion of the Director of Player Safety
5. It is the personal responsibility of each suspended player to make arrangements with the Director of Player Safety for a disciplinary reinstatement hearing.
6. A player suspended for any reason as a result of his/her actions during a game will not be permitted to play for any team in the NCHL including NCHL tournaments until the suspension has been served in full.
7. A player suspended for any reason will not be permitted to be present on the bench during any NCHL game.
8. Any suspension assessed will carry through subsequent seasons, unless it is a penalty minute accumulation suspension.
9. Any player attempting to play while suspended will be suspended indefinitely from the league. ID may be requested at any time from a player to verify identification during the regular season, Playoffs, and Tournaments.
INCIDENT REVIEW PROCESS
The review committee is comprised of no less than three members of the NCHL administration including the Director of Player Safety
Any suspension resulting from individual player penalty accumulation will be automatic and will not require a review. These suspensions will be sent out by the NCHL to the team GM and be posted on the NCHL website.
Any other suspensions will follow a review procedure. These will be any major, match penalties or gross misconducts. The procedure will be as follows:
1. Game sheets and official write ups will be received
2. Write ups from both team GMs from the game will be requested
3. Discussions with both officials and GMs will be done if clarification of write ups is needed.
4. Decisions will be made by the Director of Player Safety at this point and the team GM will be notified and the website updated.
5. At this point the decisions made are FINAL
Any suspensions that are indefinite will require a disciplinary meeting before the player can play in the NCHL again.
1. Any team who forfeits before the start of a game will also forfeit another game from their schedule. This will not apply to games that are forfeited due to team penalty accumulation, or any other reason, during a game.
2. If a team forfeits their last game of the regular season that team will have the option of:
a. Forfeit their playoff game and be finished for the season. The other team will get credited for 1 game player for every player on his or her roster.
b. Have the option to pay $300 that will go directly towards the team who was forfeited against for their loss of game. This will enable the offending team to be eligible for playoffs.
3. If a team forfeits their first game in the Playoff Division Finals best of three series they will forfeit the remainder of their playoffs and the next place team in their respective division will take that teams place.
1. All teams are required to have a goaltender present and on the ice at the beginning of each game. Game play will not commence until both designated goaltenders, wearing regulation certified goaltender equipment have been dressed
2. In the event that a goaltender does not come onto the ice until after the allotted 3 minutes warm up has expired no further warm up will be permitted.
3. If the goalie does not come on the ice after the 3-minute warm up the game will start with 6 skaters on the ice. This will continue until the goalie is fully dressed. If a goalie is not on the ice before the end of the 1st period, the game will be forfeited.
4. If a game ends in a forfeit the said team will forfeit their next game to their opponent to play.
5. Goaltenders shall be permitted to wear ‘Cat-Eye’ type goaltender masks. By doing so, they assume all risk inherent therein and agree to take full responsibility for any injury or harm caused to themselves while wearing such equipment. In addition, they must agree to waive any liability whatsoever from the NCHL, league administrators or the league governing body. 6.
6. Goaltenders are encouraged, but nor required, to wear a team jersey consistent with that of their teammates; it is recommended that goalies NOT wear the same color of their opponents.
4 TIERED RULES
All the same NCHL rules except that there will be no penalty shots awarded on a team’s 6th, 7th and 8th team penalty. A forfeit still occurs at the 9th team penalty. (**See Team Penalty Accumulation Section)
All the same NCHL rules apply.
All the same NCHL rules apply except no one player can score more than 3 goals in a single game, excluding any shoot out goals. If a player with 3 goals is awarded a penalty shot, any other player that is on the ice at the time of the infraction will be selected from that players team to take the shot. If a 4th goal is scored by one player, the goal will be disallowed and the face off will be at centre ice
All the same NCHL rules apply except no one player can score more than 3 goals in a single game, excluding any shoot out goals. If a player with 3 goals is awarded a penalty shot, any other player that is on the ice at the time of the infraction will be selected from that player’s team to take the shot. If a 4th goal is scored by one player, the goal will be disallowed and the face off will be at centre ice.
Tier 4 will also follow the rules surrounding the Mentorship program as well as the Fair Play Initiative (Ringer Rule).
The Mentorship Program is a program designed for good players to be present to help teach the game of hockey to Tier 4 players through coaching and leading by example. Keeping with the development philosophy of Tier 4, higher skilled players can still play with their friend, but they must respect the intentions of the Tier.
Fair Play Initiative (Ringer Rule)
If a team fails to nominate a player who fits the category of the Mentorship Program or is too skilled of a player for Tier 3 the following rules and process will be in place:
1. If a player is deemed by the officials to be playing outside the skill level and spirit of the division (at the discretion of the on-ice official) both Captains shall be called by the officials and the player will be issued a warning and reminded to play within the spirit of the Tier and Division.
2. If a warning has been issued to the player and they continue to play outside the spirit of the division, a 2-minute minor penalty for Unsportsmanlike Conduct shall be assessed.
3. After receiving the 2-minute penalty for Unsportsmanlike penalty and the player continues to play outside the spirit of the division, the on-ice officials shall assess a Gross Misconduct. This player will be ejected from the game and a suspension review will be completed.
**above is the in-game process**
1. Upon receiving the first warning, the team’s GM and offending player will be contacted by the league. They will be asked to review the Fair Play Warning ruling, its philosophy, and reply to the league representative with an agreement and an understanding of the FPW system, and its implications moving forward.
2. If the player receives another warning in any future game, that player will again be assessed a verbal warning, and a “FPW” label will then be added to the player’s name for the balance of the season.
3. All future games played by any player with a “FPW” label, NO verbal warning from the officials will occur and the official will either issue a 2-minute minor for Unsportsmanlike conduct or Gross Misconduct. The Director of Player safety can suspend any player with a FPW label at their discretion if they continue to play outside the spirit of Tier 4.
4. FPW labels will continue between Winter and Summer seasons unless teams move up to a higher Tier Division.
5. All verbal warnings will be tracked, and ANY three warnings will also bring with it an FPW label throughout all tier 4 teams the player plays on. This prevents players from simply receiving a verbal warning each game, with no penalty or implications.
6. Player receiving a 4th (or more) FPW on any tier 4 team will be reviewed for suspension and possible mentorship label.
7. A player with an FPW cannot participate in a shootout.
1. Mentorship Program is primarily a voluntary program that GM can nominate players on their own team who they feel fit this role
2. A Mentor is there to guide, help, coach and aide development of their teammates. Participate in games, but not control games
3. Mentors cannot score goals but if a goal is scored it will NOT count and a face off will occur at center ice, same as the 3-goal rule.
4. Mentor’s name will have an “M” beside it on the game sheet
5. Mentor’s assists will count, but will be monitored
6. If a Mentor does not follow the development philosophy outlined, they will be removed from Tier 4
7. If a player receives multiple FPW from the league (all FPW combined within tier 4) the League has the option to deem a player a Mentor and all mentorship rules will apply for the remainder of the season
GAME PLAY (EXCEPTIONS TO THE RULES)
1. All games will be comprised of three 15-minute ‘stop-time’ periods
2. All Team Rosters must have a designated player as Captain marked beside the individuals name with a “C”.
3. All teams must have a minimum of 6 skaters and a Goalie before a game will start. If no Goalie is on the ice a team must have a minimum of 7 skaters to start a game. Referees are encouraged to allow teams a 10 minutes grace period to allow a team to meet the minimum requirement. If after 10 minutes a team cannot field enough players, they forfeit the game.
4. In instances where the permit time for the ice has 5 minutes or less remaining and there is more than 2 minutes of playing time on the clock, the next whistle will result in the game clock being dropped to 2 minutes.
5. The centre red line will not be regarded in any instances of icing or offside calls. Should any player of a team, shoot, bat or deflect the puck from behind their own blue line beyond the goal line of the opposing team, the call of icing will be made by the officials and a face off will take place in the defensive end the offending team, unless on the play, the puck entered the net of the opposing team, in which case the goal will be allowed.
6. Automatic icing may be called or waived off based upon the discretion of the on-ice officials.
7. Any player ejected from an NCHL game may or may not receive a 10-minute misconduct based on the discretion of the on-ice officials.
8. Each team will be permitted to take one-30 second time out during the course of any game, regular season or playoffs. This time out must be taken during a normal stoppage of play.
9. If at the end of regulation time, the score is tied, each team will be awarded one point in the league standings. Each team will each designate 3 shooters for a shootout. The team scoring more goals in the shootout will be declared the winner, and the winning goal will be recorded as an OT goal. If at the end of the shootout the teams are still tied the game will be recorded as a tie.
10. No player in the penalty box at the end of regulation time will be permitted to participate in the shootout.
11. For a shootout to take place there must be 3 minutes remaining on the permit ice time.
12. In the instance a goalie is struck in the head by a puck, the play will not be called dead unless;
– The referee feels an injury occurred
– An injury is visibly present *this call is strictly discretionary by the on-ice referee*
All players are required to bring government issued photo identification to all playoff games. If you do not have government issued photo ID, you will not be permitted to play. In the rare case that a player has a temporary driver license you must contact League admin a minimum of 24 hours prior to your game to discuss options for alternate photo ID options. NO EXCEPTIONS
Time: 3 – 15 Minute stop-time periods.
If the score is tied with 7:00 remaining in permit (ice time), the clock will be reset to 2:00.
If the score remains tied at the end of regulation time, the winner will be decided by a shoot-out.
If the score becomes tied with less than 5:00 remaining in permit (ice time), shoot-out will take place immediately.
Each team will designate 5 players for shoot-out.
If the game remains tied after these initial 10 shooters, every other player on the team must shoot in a sudden death shootout. If game is still tied and all players have had the opportunity to shoot, then the order starts over with the 1st player to shoot.
The original 5 designated players from each team will alternate until a winner has been decided.
No player serving a penalty at the end of regulation time will be permitted to participate in the shoot- out.
Players with an FPW are not permitted to participate in shootout.
Teams will no longer be reseeded as they win, teams will advance through playoff rounds as per the schedule posted online.
1. Divisional Win % (only games played between teams that are currently in the same division are applied towards divisional win percentage seedings)
2. Fewer penalty minutes
3. Goal differential
4. Coin toss
If your team is unable to proceed in the playoffs, please advise the time keeper at the start of the game. In this situation the game will be played, but your opponent will continue on to the next round of the playoffs.
Players must play a minimum of 1/3 of a team’s originally scheduled games to be eligible for playoffs and provincials.
If any player is determined to be ineligible (not approved for playoffs or playing while suspended), that game will be deemed an immediate forfeit loss and your opponent will continue on to the next round of the playoffs.
Substitute goalies must be approved by league administration. Playing a goalie that has not been approved by the league and/or does not fall under the requirements of a spare goalie you will forfeit the game.
This season players will be required to wear “team jerseys” to play in all playoff games. Accepted forms of “team jerseys” are, your team jersey complete with logo, a solid jersey with a number but no logo, or an NCHL practice jersey with a number on the back. All jerseys must be the same in color and have distinct numbers. Any jerseys with matching numbers will not be allowed, with the exception of the goaltender.
The NCHL reserves the right to add to and/or amend the official league rules at any time as deemed necessary or appropriate by league administration.