Hockey Nerd

Newly Proposed Early Season Game Policy
Posted: 2015-10-09 13:00:00 ET

MYHockey's early season game policy has been problematic for years. Each fall MYHockey deals with an amazing number of contradictions, accusations and issues that leave everyone frustrated and waste a lot of time and resources. This fall we asked 600 MYHockey contributors to provide feedback on the policy. Almost 200 responded providing excellent, but often contradictory, recommendations. We did, however, identify a number of themes from this feedback and MYHockey needs to move forward with an improved, more consistent early season game policy.

It would be great if MYHockey could use one date for the start of the hockey season in all parts of North America, but there is no way that it can happen. Different USA Hockey districts have very different and contradictory policies that make that impossible (and thus our issues each fall). MYHockey's new policy will identify the earliest accepted game dates for teams from different regions of North America based upon understood norms, rules and common practices. We understand that in many places, fall/winter rostered teams may begin play before these dates. Those games simply will not count and should not be recorded. If a team from one region which starts play on August 15th plays another team from a region that starts play on Sept 1st, the rules will be black and white, the game will not be recorded in MYHockey. Does that mean that a team playing in a late August tournament could have some, but not all of their games recorded, yes. Will this be slightly confusing to some who are not familiar with the rule, yes. There is, however, no other acceptable way to move forward on the issue.

The default season start date for all USA Girls and Boys hockey will be August 15th. Exceptions include:
  • Michigan - Sept 1st
  • Central District (IL, WI, MO, IA, KS, NE) - Sept 1st
  • Minn-Kota (MN, ND, SD) non-Tier 1 - Oct 15th
The default season start date for all Canadian Girls and Boys hockey will be September 1st. The only exception to this is Ontario Boys Midget (Major) AAA which due to Junior tryouts will not start recording games until Sept 15th unless they are league games played prior to this date.

One policy clarification or point of emphasis. While MYHockey is not and cannot be the roster police, we have to be cognizant of roster issues. Our long standing policy regarding rosters is unchanged, but needs to be stated in context to the updated policy regarding early season games. MYHockey considers any team with three additionally rostered players as a unique team. Conversely, any two teams with less than three uniquely rostered players is considered the same exact team, regardless of what name they play under and the games should be applied to that single team.

A second point of clarification is regarding summer rostered teams. In general, MYHockey does not want summer teams in our database and any games against these teams (when they are uniquely rostered summer teams), do not belong in MYHockey. Under no circumstances should a summer team appear in the rankings and if any summer rostered teams are in the rankings, we ask that you send us a request to remove them. Games against some summer teams will be added when circumstances warrant as much, often to keep these games from being entered against the wrong team.

A third point of clarification is that all games recorded in MYHockey that are valid, counting games by all other rules, will be used to rank teams for the entire season. We will no longer limit the use August games to the first 5-6 ranking weeks of the season.

MYHockey has not deleted games deemed "ineligible" by this proposed new policy at this time. We are posting this policy on October 9, 2015 and requesting that anyone with a significant objection to this proposed policy notify us by email using the MYHockey Contact Form on or before Tuesday October 20, 2015. MYHockey will either confirm the implementation of this policy on October 21, 2015 or announce other intentions at that time.

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