Here are the main points from our conversation:
- The 54 game schedule "parameters" are set. It seems there were still some sticking points on how everything would work, so while we don't yet have a schedule for 2012-13; the outline is set.
- The SJHL dropped the Showcase. The initial plan was to hold the Showcase in Melfort this year, but with the weekend cancelled that won't be happening.
- It's really too bad because the Showcase is an absolute blast for the broadcasters. Lots of great hockey and it's one of the few times we can all get together at the same time and catch up.
- The Showcase will be replaced by an "Identification Camp" for '94 and '95 born players with some older players mixed in. Select players from this camp head to the World Junior A Challenge selection camp for Team West.
- The format isn't exactly set yet, but I suspect each team will send a few players as selected by their coaches. The idea is to have at least two teams at the camp, but like I said the format isn't set.
- My brilliant idea is to make it kind of a "Young Stars" format and divide it into a North/South kind of All-Star game. That would resemble what currently happens running alongside the WJAC.
- Part of the reason the Showcase was dropped was the league just wasn't getting the scout attendance they were hoping for. The SJHL feels this new camp with the specific age range will be more attractive to scouts.
- The bonus for the teams is they get one more home game and could save on a bit of travel, though Chow says that wasn't much of a factor in the decision.
- League sponsorship is strong. Chow says the league's marketing firm has been doing a good job of building corporate interest. The new digital boards that will be going up in each of the SJHL rinks are generating plenty of interest.
- There were discussions about updating the website. A refurbish/reboot is something the league is seriously considering before the "new year". Whether that's the new season or Jan. 1, I'm not sure (though I'm guessing the season).
- Interestingly enough, Chow related an anecdote saying someone from out of province recommended a site like the SJHL's to two leagues.
- On the website, it's not necessarily a bad site, but the overall look seriously needs to be updated if only brought into a similar look as some of the team websites, some of which look pretty decent.
It looks as though the main adjustment will be a reduction in the accumulation numbers regarding fighting and dangerous hits. Currently, a player can fight five times in the regular season with the sixth incurring a suspension and team fine with the discipline.
Here are the details on the accumulations and some other changes to the Supplement:
- Upon receipt of 5th fighting major - 1 game suspension
- Upon receipt of 6th fighting major - 3 game suspension and $750 team fine
- Upon receipt of 7th fighting major - 4 game suspension and $1,000 team fine
- Upon receipt of 8th fighting major - 8 game suspension and $1,250 team fine
- Any subsequent fighting major shall result in a complete review by the league to determine an appropriate suspension and team fine.
Accumulation numbers continue from the Regular Season into the Playoffs instead of resetting.
Staged fight rules remain the pretty much the same. The only change is if a player is identified as the instigator of a staged fight, the team's coach will be suspended for two games (up from one).
- Upon receipt of 2nd instigator penalty – 1 game suspension and $1,000 team fine.
- Upon receipt of 3rd instigator penalty – 2 game suspension and $1,500 team fine.
- Upon receipt of 4th instigator penalty – 3 game suspension and $2,000 team fine.
- Upon receipt of 5th instigator penalty – 4 game suspension and $2,500 team fine.
- Any additional instigator penalties shall result in an indefinite suspension and full review by the league of the player and the team to determine an appropriate suspension and team fine.
Boarding has been added to the language regarding rules around Checking from Behind.
A language change under the "Blow to the Head" Category:
1.1 Illegal Act: : If a player is fouled or hit illegally, for which a penalty is being assessed, and as a result of
the illegal hit the player hits his head on the glass, ice or the boards and
head injury, this shall be construed as a Blow to the Head and a major and game misconduct or match penalty shall be assessed.
Finally, a new section added to the supplement
REGULATION 8 – ACCUMULATIONS IN MULTIPLE CATEGORIES
8.1 Accumulated Infractions – For all the categories listed below players who are on the accumulated
suspension border in more than one category may be reviewed.
• Checking from Behind and Boarding (Minor, Major or Match)
• Blows to the Head (Minor, Major or Match)
• Non-Fighting Majors
Upon receipt of 5th infraction from any of the above categories (and any subsequent infraction thereafter) a
player will receive an automatic 1 game suspension, which suspension is in addition to any suspension that
may apply under the specific regulation relating to such category.
Such player will also be required to participate in a hearing among the player, his coach and a league official to discuss, among other things, the objectives of the Junior A Supplement, specific regulations contained in the Junior A Supplement, the player's impugned behavior, the responsibility of the player to adjust his behavior and actions and the consequences if such player fails to correct his behavior and actions.
Should a second hearing be required, the player will receive a minimum 1 game suspension plus additional discretionary discipline based on the nature of the subsequent infraction.
Those aren't all of the changes, but most of the major adjustments. I'm guessing an adjusted supplement will be posted on the league's website in the future.
Here's a link to the current one: http://www.sjhl.ca/files/Junior%20A%20Supplement%20-%20Supplement%20AUG17-2010.pdf
Post Script: To wrap things up on this post, it is my last day today (Wednesday) at MBC. I'm moving on to a new career opportunity that I can't tell you here just yet. Should be able to let you know next week as that's when I actually start the new job. I'll have more then.