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National Hockey League implements new headshot rule

March 25, 2010 | 10:42 am

Gary_240 The National Hockey League has implemented a rule that prohibits "a lateral, back-pressure or blind-side hit to an opponent where the head is targeted and/or the principal point of contact."

The rule was unanimously approved by the Board of Governors and endorsed by the NHL, the NHL Players' Assn. Competition Committee and the National Hockey Players' Assn. Executive Board.

Players who violate the rule will be subject to supplementary discipline.

"We believe this is the right thing to do for the game and for the safety of our players," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement. "The elimination of these types of hits should significantly reduce the number of injuries, including concussions, without adversely affecting the level of physicality in the game."

--Melissa Rohlin

Photo: Gary Bettman. Credit: Bruce Bennett / Getty Images.