Sunday, November 15, 2009

Day 12, Rule 12

The game: San Jose vs. Chicago.

Why I chose it: I'd watch Chicago even if they were playing against a rec league in Winnipeg on Sunday morning.

The rule: Section 3, Equipment. Rule 12, Illegal Equipment.

Number of rules in the section: 5.

The definition: Compared to the last rule, this one's pretty simple. But because all but a limited amount of gear has to be worn under the uniform, it could also be pretty easily violated. It covers penalties for illegal equipment, including gloves and elbow pads, and outlines the League's right to inspect equipment at any time. All protective equipment, except for gloves, headgear and the goalkeeper's leg pads, must be worn under the uniform. Here's one I never thought of: all elbow pads which do not have a soft protective outer covering of sponge rubber or similar material at least one-half inch (1/2") thick shall be considered dangerous equipment.

My favorite highlight: 12.4, Fair Play. These equipment regulations (Section 3) are written in the spirit of "fair play." If at any time the League feels that this spirit is being abused, the offending equipment will be deemed ineligible for play until a hearing has ruled on its eligibility. Since when is there fair play in hockey?

The final score: Chicago 4, San Jose 3 (in OT).

Number of times rule violated: 0. Unless the refs failed to bust somebody for wearing 1/3" thick elbow pads.

The morals of the story:

The game: In my experience, rules are put into place because someone once tried to get away with whatever the rule covers. Somewhere in the NHL's history, it's a good bet somebody wore illegal elbow pads to take someone out or tried to cut a hole in their glove to gain a better grip on their stick. Here's the thing...what's the point of winning if it was only because you cut a hole in your glove or wore dangerous elbow pads to knock somebody out? If you're so desperate to win you need to violate this rule, you deserve more than a bench minor penalty.

Life: We need an illegal equipment rule for life. Anyone who tries to gain the unfair advantage by violating the spirit of fair play will be subject to surprise inspection and a bench minor penalty for anything that is deemed illegal. There will be three sections to the rule: 1) Workplace. No person shall take credit for the work of another for the purpose of promotion or making oneself look smarter than they really are. If, upon inspection, said individual is found guilty, they will be relegated to taking orders at the first drivethru window at McDonald's with no chance of promotion to handing out the food at the second window. 2) Personal. Any person caught cheating and telling the wife, husband, lover, etc. "it's not what you think" will be put under house arrest with no access to cell phones, PDAs or anything else that will facilitate further cheating until they are willing to admit the truth. 3) Roadways. Anyone who goes slow so other people can't get through the green light and then speeds up just in time so that only he or she can get through the yellow light -- thereby leaving everyone else behind and even more late for work -- will be stripped of their license permanently.

Next up on 11/16: Section 3, Equipment. Rule 13, Puck.

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