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AAHL Guidelines

The AAHL currently follows hockey guidelines and rules created by USA Hockey as a baseline. However, we have rule changes specific to our league, as well as a code of conduct all players are required to abide by.

We also have BYLAWS which cover the broader operational aspects of the league.

Penalty Box

We recommend that every player read this notice.

We HIGHLY recommend that every player should avoid being a participant in any of the actions below.

The Rule prohibiting physical contact by any player with any official is not new, and has existed substantially without change since the inception of the League. Review of its application is useful both in cautioning new league members and in reminding league veterans of the consequence of violation of this prohibition.

Verbal abuse of officials or refusal to quickly leave the ice when directed to the penalty box, usually results in a misconduct penalty, followed by ejection for continued or aggravated misconduct. Players are reminded that only designated team members (captain or assistant) may discuss a call with the officials.

In no event may any player ever make any physical contact with a referee. To illustrate how absolute this rule is, touching a referee however slightly, even by a finger to the chest, will result in a Match Penalty and expulsion from the league. This is generally for a minimum of one year. The player forfeits all dues paid to that date, is prohibited from finishing the season in all divisions in which he or she plays, and gets no refund for unpaid games. The player must reapply for permission to rejoin the league after the expulsion period has passed. Re-admission is considered by the League Board, and is not automatic.

In a recent season year a referee in a game was punched by a player following a penalty assessment. The player was suspended until the next Board meeting about ten days later, at which time the Board decided on a lifetime suspension. While this is an extreme action, every year or two a player is subjected to such a penalty by the Board. No player ever given a lifetime suspension has been permitted to rejoin the league.

The physical space immediately surrounding a league official (including scorekeepers) is sacrosanct. Invasion of this protected area which results in any contact, however slight, is never excused. Players may expect that the league will act aggressively to protect officials from any intentional or reckless physical contact by any player, by eliminating violators from the League.

Note that penalties may be assessed against players for misconduct which occurs after the game, and even after both teams have left the ice.

Conduct Which Draws a Match Penalty
Safety of players and officials is paramount. The League thus requires protective gear, and will expel those who put others at risk of avoidable injury. A Match Penalty, reviewed by the full AAHL Board, is assessed for the following misconduct: (Extracted from Bylaws)

  1. Intent to Injure, evidenced by a clear intention and voluntary action.
  2. Physical Abuse of an Official during a game. [end of resurfacing prior to warmup, to beginning of resurfacing following handshake]
  • This would include ANY voluntary physical contact by a player with an Official (whether with a stick, a finger to the chest, or even a tap on the shoulder but would not include accidental contact, e.g. being pushed into the Official, or incidental contact in the course of play);
  • Intimidation which threatens the immediate use of physical contact.