SECTION 6 – PHYSICAL FOULS
NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE
OFFICIAL RULES 2013-2014
Rule 50 - Kneeing
- Kneeing is the act of a player leading with his knee and in some cases extending his leg outwards to make contact with his opponent.
- The Referee, at his discretion, may assess a minor penalty, based on the severity of the infraction, to a player guilty of kneeing an opponent.
- The Referee, at his discretion, may assess a major penalty, based on the severity of the infraction, to a player guilty of kneeing an opponent (see50.5).
– The Referee, at his discretion, may assess a match penalty if, in his judgment, the player attempted to or deliberately injured his opponent by kneeing.
Game Misconduct Penalty
- When a player has been assessed a major penalty for kneeing he shall also be assessed a Game Misconduct.
Fines and Suspensions
- There are no specified fines or suspensions for kneeing, however, supplementary discipline can be applied by the Commissioner at his discretion (refer to Rule 28).
I have always wondered about how "kneeing" is adjudicated. I often hear the phrase "knee-on-knee," referring to a collision where Player A's extended knee hits Player B's knee, but I never hear about a player raising or extending his knee to make contact with any other part of his opponent's body being called as a penalty.
I have seen knee-on-knee collisions where both players had their leg extended to the side in the act of turning. I have seen knee-on-knee collisions where one player didn't shift the position of his leg, the other player turned, and they collided, yet the non-turning player was called for the penalty. And I have seen guys raise their knee like they meant to rack someone (sorry, technical term), but they were not called for anything at all, despite making significant contact.
The rule itself makes no reference to where the extended knee makes contact. It's not like an illegal check to the head where "principle point of contact" is the main set of words used to judge whether someone has committed the act or not. The Department of Player Safety's video only refers to kneeing as knee-on-knee or knee-on-thigh, but it just seems inconsistent with how the rule is actually worded... what do people think?