Video review is coming to the ECHL.
The league is dipping its toes into the review stream with a pilot program for 2018-19.
Four teams will participate in the pilot video review program: the Idaho Steelheads, Kalamazoo Wings, Toledo Walleye, and Worcester Railers. All four of their home arenas will be outfitted with replay technology for the 2018-19 season.
“With the speed and caliber of play in the ECHL, this program will help our officials get the call right on plays around the net,” said Joe Ernst, the league’s senior vice president. “We reviewed the system with our referees at ECHL officiating training camp, and believe that once this program tests successfully, we can move towards use in all ECHL markets in subsequent seasons.”’
Four specific scenarios will be eligible for video review.
- Puck crossing the goal line;
- Puck entering the net using a distinct kicking motion;
- Puck directed, batted, or thrown into the net by an attacking player; and
- Puck entering the net before the goal frame is dislodged from its moorings.
Previously, the referee could consult with the goal judges posted behind each net for a second opinion on the play, but without the benefit of any replay.
“We have had extensive discussion on how to best move forward with this initiative, and it became apparent that a pilot program to test our systems and protocol was the best solution to determine next steps,” said Ryan Crelin, Commissioner of the ECHL.
“The Video Replay testing program was recommended by our Rules Committee and has the support of ECHL Coaches as the overall goal is to improve our tools to make the best call on-ice.”