It's cut and dry, no sitting on the fence and no changing your mind. Do you like the new two-line pass rule. Much like on-ice officials, you must chose, yes or no. A linesman doesn't get to call maybe when there's a close call at the line and nor should you. But before you decide . . . how about a look at the two candidates if you will. For those unfamiliar, prior to this season you could not pass across two lines when the leader player was already over the second line, that has been eliminated by taking the red line out of play. The second blueline is purely for off-sides.
Speed up the game:
The "new" rules are in place to enhance the game, speed up the game, and quite frankly increase the amount of errors on the ice. With the exception of the "magical box" behind the net, all of the newer rules do speed up the game, and decrease stopages. The delay of game penalties for clearing the puck over the glass discourage that activity, fast faceoff rule, and the tag up offside rule all work to eliminate stopages. As does the elimination of the red line for two line passes, it also prevents icings.
Enhancing the power play:
Because there is now officially one less pass required to get to the opposition's blueline (netminders are often making tape-to-tape passes to their offensive player on through all zones), the powe play becomes more potent and naturally bad changes for the defensive team become much more likely, especially in the second period. It's a two way road though, anyone coming out of the penalty box is now fair game for a breakaway without dipping around the center line.
Increasing the speed:
Players lose speed when they have to time how they are crossing the line, the lack of a red line for two-line pass purposes, opens up the game to speed, defensive blunders and spectacular offensive rushes.
Allowing the Two-line pass
Everyone at one time in their life or another has played with a lazy sniper kid who would simply stand at the other end and wait for the ball or puck to come to them and then get their chance. On of the ideas in implementing the two-line pass rule was to faze out one-dimensional snipers who litterally did not have any skills. Opening up their venue could create an influx of uninspiring hockey.
The elmination of the two-line pass is something many thought would help make the slower bigger defenders obsolete. Perhaps to some extent it along with some of the rules is hurting the big defenders. But what about the creative rushing defenders? Where do they fit in? The center line used to keep offenses in check, but by doing so allowed defenders on the opposite side of the ice the ability to have some assurance that they only needed to cover off a small zone. Unfortuantely the new rule permitting the two line pass over center could jeopradize the creativity of rushing defenders.
Regressive Defensive Trends:
The original purpose of the elimination of
the tag-up offside rule was that many teams were exploiting the rule when
their team was leading the game in order to kill time. By forcing
players to clear, it enabled the trailing team to have a much better chance
of playing the puck (and also avoid boring the fans to death). The
removal of the two-line pass rule also allows teams to exploit the rules.
You just slap the puck out of your zone and then some just beyond the center
line just tips the puck and effectively you have a free icing.