NHL intends to grandfather in mandatory visors beginning next season

Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL Competition Committee recommended a number of important rule changes on Tuesday, including mandatory visors and hybrid icing.

The discussion about mandatory visors in the NHL seems to finally have a conclusion. The NHL Competition Committee recommended on Tuesday that mandatory visors be grandfathered in, among other notable proposals.

Starting next season, visors would be mandatory for all players entering the league. The proposal states that players who have played more than 25 games will have the option of not wearing a visor. The favorable vote seems to indicate that the NHLPA's stance on the issue has softened. That could be a result of the high-profile injuries and scares this season involving visors (Marc Staal's injured eye and Nate Thompson's near-miss come to mind).

The NHL will also experiment with hybrid icing in the preseason before deciding whether to use it in the regular season. That's a welcome change for those concerned about player safety, but there's bound to be some hockey purists equally concerned about physicality being taken out of the game.

Additionally, all four-minute high-sticking penalties will be reviewed, and the nets will become shallower.

All of these changes still have to be approved by the Board of Governors and the NHLPA Executive Committee, but that'll be easy, right? The head honchos of the NHL and NHLPA always agree on important things that make sense.

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