NHL step closer to a coaches' challenge system

NEW YORK (AP) The NHL is a step closer to a coaches' challenge system.

The joint NHL/NHL Players' Association competition committee said Thursday that it recommended coaches' challenges for goals involving goalie interference and offside plays.

If approved by the NHLPA executive committee and board of governors, goalie interference challenges would be handled by referees at ice level and offside plays by the situation room in Toronto.

The competition committee reached no consensus on overtime changes for next season and will continue discussions. General managers voted in March to consider three-on-three overtime either for a full five minutes or the format used by the American Hockey League - three minutes of four-on-four and then four minutes of three-on-three.

Also recommended is a change to faceoff rules in the defensive zone that makes the defensive player put his stick down first, rather than the visiting player. For faceoffs at center ice, the rule will remain the same, requiring that the visiting player put his stick down first.

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