For the second year in a row, the NHL will hold the RDO, “Research and Development Camp", in Etobicoke, Ontario. The camp will unite thirty-six top prospects with some of the games most respected teachers, in an attempt to test some of the league-wide ideas on how to improve the NHL.
(The NHL looks to improve the game at the RDO Camp. Photo: USHL.com)
Brendan Shanahan, the NHL’s Senior Vice President of Player Safety and Hockey Development, views the event as a way to proactively seek ways to make the game of hockey even better. Shanahan says, “The game has never been better, but we don’t want to rest. Ideas, whether they are liked or disliked, are put to the test by the young prospects.”
Some ideas are being looked at for the second summer in a row, so that has to get you thinking that maybe some rule changes are indeed on the horizon. Some of the repeat tests will be some face-off variations, hybrid icing and no-touch icing. Shanahan says that, “some collisions that occur during an icing play have raised some orange flags, but no red flags as of yet, " said Shanahan.
Another main focus on this years camp, is a look into ways technology can help referee the game and keep improving on how the game is portrayed by its loyal fans. One idea it seems they will toy with, is attempting to use wireless microphones amongst the referees to allow communication between the officials.
The ultimate goal for the NHL’s Hockey Operations Department is to gather and analyze as much data as it can possibly can on each of the topics, before it could ever even consider proposing a rule change. This camp allows the officials to put these ideas into game-like scenarios.
All in all, the two day session is filled with some fun and exciting ways the hockey superiors feel could positively shake up an already pretty amazing game.
What would you like to see added or removed from the NHL? Leave a comment.
*Some information and quotes obtained via NHL.com