NHL adopts ‘breaking the plane’ as its new offside rule

This is pretty damn cool. Red Wings play-by-play announcer Ken Daniels’ suggestion that players no longer be considered offside if they have “broken the plane” of the offensive zone blueline has been adopted by the NHL and NHLPA as their one big rule change for the 2020-2021 season. From the NHLPA:

NHL Rule 83 (Off-side)

Beginning in the 2020-21 regular season, a player’s skate will not have to be in contact with the blue line in order to be on-side. The updated language for NHL Rule 83.1 follows.

83.1  Off-side – Players of the attacking team must not precede the puck into the attacking zone.

The position of the player’s skates and not that of his stick shall be the determining factor in all instances in deciding an off-side. A player is off-side when both skates are completely over the leading edge of the blue line involved in the play.

(NEW) – A player is on-side when either of his skates are in contact with the blue line, or on his own side of the line, at the instant the puck completely crosses the leading edge of the blue line. On his own side of the line shall be defined by a “plane” of the blue line which shall extend from the leading edge of the blue line upwards. If a player’s skate has yet to break the “plane” prior to the puck crossing the leading edge, he is deemed to be on-side for the purpose of the off-side rule.

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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.