Hockey league introduces fines

Managers of hockey teams in the North Central Minor Hockey Association (NCMHA) are under the clock to ensure timely reporting

Managers of hockey teams in the North Central Minor Hockey Association (NCMHA) are under the clock to ensure timely reporting of games and statistics.

In an effort to ensure statistics are entered in a reasonable time, teams have 24-hours to submit information electronically or risk a $50 fine for non-compliance, explained NCMHA president Stephen Holt. “Compliance was pretty good (last year) but not as good as we hoped.”

The association handed out 20 $50 fines to member teams across the league and a few have already been handed out this season.

“If a team is playing Friday night and someone’s getting suspended, the governor has to know about it before the Saturday game,” explained Holt of the importance of timely reporting.

“There’s no excuse in today’s technology,” he added.

Suspensions from too many penalty minutes

Another change to the league’s bylaws this year was the implementation of game suspensions to players who have too many minutes of penalties.

These are the suspension guidelines during the regular season from the NCMHA website:

• 60 penalty minutes: one game suspension

• 80 penalty minutes: two game suspension

• 100 penalty minutes: three game suspension for the player and one for the coach.

• 125 penalty minutes: Indefinite suspension pending review by the president, vice president and governor.

“We are early in the season and already there are some kids who are really close to the 60 minutes unfortunately,” said Holt.

Most of those players are at the midget level and some in the bantam. Holt says the executive wanted to speed up the game and reduce penalty issues.

Some amendments may be made to the bylaw next season to accommodate for teams that play more games but the NCMHA intends to continue with the program. For example midget teams play more games in the regular season than younger teams.

“We’re going to have to base it on so much at each level,” he said.

If players keep a strong discipline, not only in the game, but also with referees they should be able to have a good season. If a player says something against the referee, they get a 10 minutes misconduct. It does not take long for that to add up, said Holt.

“Hopefully it changes the game in a positive way,” said Holt.

He said coaches and managers were spoken to before the start of the hockey season to ensure accurate data entry and no doctoring of game sheets. Team managers send visiting team managers the sheet for confirmation of information and then data is sent in.

NCMHA governors are closely monitoring these transactions as well to ensure compliance.