I like it. I don't think the "race for the puck" that continues into the boards adds any suspense and only leads to more possible injuries.
Hybrid Icing in the NHL
Poll Results: Hybrid Icing (2013 NHL Pre-Season) - Keep it or Go Back to Traditional Icing?
100% (12)Keep Hybrid Icing
0% (0)Revert to Traditional Icing
TheSandTrap.com Top Picks
Do I understand it correctly? If so, how are the referees calling this? For example, let's say a defensive player is skating for the puck and is at the blue line. An offensive player, who is known to be one of the league's fastest skaters, is a few paces behind.
Would they let those two players race for the puck and call an icing if it later becomes clear that the defensive player would get there first (maybe, say, 10 ft short of the puck)?
Yep. If the offensive player is in the lead, or they're close, the play continues normally.
They race to the "line" formed by the two face-off dots. If the defensive player clearly gets there first, they blow it as icing.
See above. The line between the faceoff dots.
Actually that's not 100% true, but the line is used as a sort of "make your decision now" point. The below is an example that shows it's not simply a "race" to that "line," just that the line is used as the point at which the ref makes the determination of whether someone will clearly get to the puck first.
Let's take a look at a diagram.
They're still racing, and in situations where it's close the refs let the play continue. This simply eliminates the times when a player has a clear lead but is likely to be boarded or hit from behind in touching up.
I agree. They played football without real helmets back in the day; doesn't mean we should play it that way now.*
My Dad met Gordy Howe. My Dad was a plumber and they were renovating Boston Garden back in 1971. The Red Wings were in town. Gordy was far more interested in sitting with the plumbers on their lunch break than practicing. My Dad said he was funny and told some great stories. He also showed them how he would hold the butt end of the stick and jam it into the ribs of they guy he was checking into the boards.
We were all playing hockey at the time and practiced that move!! Gordy was sneaky tough. Great player.
He also met all the Big Bad Bruins of the time. We were fanatics back then.
GMs are in favor, I hear.
I see this first and foremost a safety issue, but also helps to "speed" up the game (like hockey needs speeding up). Time is wasted in chasing down a puck that will ultimately be called icing and a face off. Make the call sooner, no one gets hurt and time is spent on playing the game. A little like the intentional walk in baseball, time wasted throwing four balls to the plate.