The National Lacrosse League has announced rule changes for the upcoming 2016 NLL season. New regulations for the league’s 30th anniversary year are highlighted by a rule change and revised mechanics for faceoff procedures.
New for 2016, Rule 44.4 (Contesting The Ball On A Faceoff) states that if a player gains possession on a faceoff with the ball in the reverse side of the stick, and fails to move, rake or direct it (to a teammate or self) and takes more than one step, a faceoff violation has occurred and the ball will be awarded to the non-offending team.
“The new faceoff regulation was implemented to help get the ball out quicker and generate faster game play coming out of the circle,” said NLL Vice President of Lacrosse Operations Brian Lemon. “It also brings back a traditional element of the game with possession of the ball being primarily in the pocket of the stick and not the reverse side.”
Last preseason, the league experimented with minimizing the duration a player could carry the ball on the back of the pocket on a faceoff.
Click here for the full list of rule changes for the upcoming year while the entire 2016 NLL Rulebook can be found by clicking here.