During the second day of the general manager meetings in Florida, the group of NHL executives have voted to amend the offside rule, according to several reports including Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet. The proposed change would see the rule no longer require a skate to be touching the ice, but over the plane of the blue line.
This does not mean that the rule is immediately changed. The amendment will have to go through the league’s Competition Committee and then be voted on by the board of governors.
Since the introduction of offside challenges, there has been much debate over whether the rule should be changed. Many reviews produce inconclusive evidence when the requirement is contact between the blade and the ice, leading to incredibly tough decisions for officiating crews. With the proposed change, one can imagine how much easier it would be to determine if a skate is still over the blue line, however there are obviously still going to be difficulties in certain situations.
Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic notes that other things on the agenda today at the GM meetings were reports on puck and player tracking which is set to begin in the playoffs, and on player safety.