What Is A Two Line Pass In Hockey

Have you heard of the term two-line pass in hockey but had no idea what it meant? If so you are not alone many hockey fans have a vague memory of the two line pass rule in hockey but aren’t quite sure how it worked.

A two-line pass in hockey is any pass that crosses over a teams blue line as well as the center redline. In other words, if a team passes from their defending zone and that pass crosses the center red line a two line pass has occurred.

Luckily for the hockey world, the two line pass rule was eliminated from hockey during the 2004-2005 lockout.

The Two Line Pass Rule

The two line pass rule in hockey was put in place for the same reasons the offside rule is still in place. Previously it was thought that without this rule it would become too easy for offensive teams to enter an opposing teams zone.

The thinking was that offensive players could wait near the other team’s blue line and receive passes from their own defensive zone.

This thought process was prevalent for years until teams began to become too effective at clogging up the neutral zone. A strategy referred to as the Swedish mid-zone trap was used to make it extremely difficult for players to get the puck into the opposing team’s zones.

This resulted in low scoring, slow-moving, and longer hockey games all across the world. Eventually, the hockey world became aware that a change needed to be made to make the game more exciting.

In the 2004 lockout, the NHL decided that it would no longer use this rule in their league. Once the rule was eliminated the game immediately changed.

The play opened up significantly and the game started to flow much better. Fans immediately noticed this difference and the popularity of the NHL began to improve. Since this change, there has been a noticeable difference in the number of goals scored in each game.

That being said very few hockey players or fans found the rule change unfair. It increased the number of goals in a game but didn’t do it in a way that felt unfair to players that were trying to stop the goals.

Nowadays the idea to eliminate the two-line pass rule in the NHL is seen as one of the smarter moves ever made by the NHL.

When Did Other Hockey Leagues Remove The Two Line Pass Rule?

Many hockey leagues followed suit of the NHL and decided to remove the two-line pass rule in the same offseason. The AHL, KHL, OHL, and several other leagues decided to also remove this rule without waiting to see how it played out in the NHL.

This was a good risk for these teams as this rule removal has very successful results.

Once the effectiveness of this rule removal has been seen in the NHL. Many otheres leagues started to follow suit. Before long it became the standard worldwide rule that the two line pass rule should not be used in hockey.

Leave a Comment