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Five Rule Changes Sought

The NHL’s general managers have recommended five rules changes for next season, including stricter penalties for kneeing violations, league operations director Brian Burke announced Wednesday.

Burke ended the three-day meetings of general managers in Scottsdale, Ariz., by also announcing that a stricter standard for calling obstruction and interference away from the puck will be used when the NHL resumes play after the two-week Olympics break.

Also, the general managers will employ selected NHL preseason games to test potential elimination of the red line and the two-line pass rule.

The rules recommended for adoption include:

Adding an automatic game misconduct penalty to a player receiving a (five-minute) major penalty for kneeing.

A new system that employs two officials calling penalties.

In conjunction with the NHL Players Association, developing new standards to limit the size of goaltending equipment with the focus on oversized chest protectors and oversized pants.

If the goalie leaves his crease to play the puck on a potential icing play, the icing will be negated.

If the goalie goes to the bench during a delayed penalty, or is pulled late to gain a man advantage, he must first reach the bench before a skater can replace him. If the skater enters prematurely, a face-off at center ice will be called instead of a penalty for too many men on the ice.