NHL eyes rule forcing player without helmet to go to bench

BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) — An NHL rule has been drafted that would force a skater to go to the bench when he loses his helmet. A player may now stay on the ice.

The general managers said at their meetings Tuesday that a skater without a helmet would be assessed a two-minute penalty if he fails to immediately leave the ice.

The proposal must go to the NHL/NHLPA competition committee and then the board of governors for approval.

The International Ice Hockey Federation has the same rule. The American Hockey League allows a player to remain on the ice if he can put his helmet back on.

The general managers also favor making helmets mandatory during pregame warmups, but that’s not part of this rule change.