"When the puck goes outside the playing area directly off the face- off, regardless as to which player may have last contacted the puck, the face-off shall remain in the same spot and no penalty will be assessed to either team for delaying the game."

Seems fairly straightforward, but I have a question about interpretation. Does this simply mean cases where the puck is pulled out of play by one of the two centers participating in the faceoff, and the puck goes out of play without touching or deflecting off a winger or defenseman, or can the language be interpreted to include situations where the puck is drawn back by either of the centers and it immediately glances off another player on either team as a direct result of the won faceoff being drawn to them?

In other words, does "directly" refer to timing and include immediate subsequent deflections as a result of a faceoff, or does it only refer to the centers taking the draw and either of them propelling the puck out of play (non-deflected) off the faceoff? The added part about delay of game seems to support the non-deflected case. Is that Right?

1 Answer 1


Yes Rule 85 "Puck out of Bounds" seems up to interpretation by the officials on the ice at the time of play. "Directly off of the face off" leads me to believe it could deflect off of a tertiary player to the face off or an official themselves and the face off would be repeated in the same position but it is one of the grey areas of the game that change depending on who is making the call and their point of view.

  • Do you have a reliable source that shows this to be the (majority/only) interpretation in use? One or two example incidents are not enough - officials do make mistakes and that doesn't mean the rule changes.
    – Nij
    May 18, 2017 at 19:21
  • 1
    Perhaps my supposition should have been a comment rather than an answer. As I stated "it seems" and "leads me to believe" which were not backed up by sources rather my personal experience with the game for decades. I agree with Matt in that interpretation varies and it could be called either way. It seems it would be a case by case basis called by on ice officials so there wouldn't be more clarification.
    – Parker McA
    May 18, 2017 at 22:23

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