Playing Rules & Regulations


Table of Contents


ANNEX 1 – Appeal Procedures


The Playing Rules & Regulations is constantly changing and evolving; consequently, the rules outlined in this document are not exhaustive and are subject to change to reflect and adapt to our minor hockey environment.


In these playing rules:

  1. Governance Committee: means the members assigned by Hockey Eastern Ontario Minor (HEO Minor) to administer the HEO U18 AAA LEAGUE.
  2. Operations Committee: means the Operations Committee of the HEO U18 AAA LEAGUE, which includes the Director of Sponsorship/Fundraising, League Registrar and the Referee in Chief.
  3. League Executive or Board of Directorsincludes the League Executive, the Operations Committee and the HEO U18 AAA LEAGUE Representatives from all of the registered teams.
  4. League: “HEO U18 AAA ” League” or “the League” means the HEO U18 AAA League generally or the League Board of Directors of the “HEO U18 AAA ” League according to its Constitution and By-Laws.
  5. HEO Minor: Means the Hockey Eastern Ontario Minor Association, Minor Council or the Executive Committee of HEO Minor.
  6. Team: Refers to any registered Team in HEO U18 AAA League.


  1. Members: Any team members, team, association, or league official whose conduct on or off the ice before, during or after any HEO U18 AAA League game, playoff or special event game is deemed to be detrimental to the interests of the HEO U18 AAA League, may be subject to discipline including suspension by the League Executive.


  1. Playing Rules & General information: can only be found on the HEO U18 AAA League Website & should be checked on a frequent basis during the season.
  2. General Playing Rules: are subject to Hockey Canada rules plus the Minor Regulations and Code of Discipline as set by HEO Minor. The following additional rules are specific to the operation of the HEO U18 AAA NOTE Where discrepancies or disputes arise theLeague Executive will determine the interpretation of said playing rules. In all cases, the Governance Committee will have the final decision on the HEO U18 AAA League playing rules.
  3. Director of Hockey Operations: The Director of Hockey Operations for the HEO U18 AAA League is responsible for ensuring the HEO U18 AAA League playing rules are complied with by every team.
  4. Code of Discipline: All teams must adhere to the latest edition of the HEO MINOR Code of Discipline listed in the most recent HEO MINOR handbook and posted on the HEO U18 AAA League & HEO MINOR website. Team officials who do not adhere to these conditions face disciplinary action by the League Director of Risk & Discipline. All penalties incurred by players and team officials under the code must be reported to the league (Director of Risk & Discipline and Director of Hockey Operations) within 24 HOURS after the completion of the game in which the infraction(s) occurred.
  5. Season: The League Executive shall determine the duration and format of both the league season and playoffs. It will also have the final decision in any HEO U18 AAA Special event for the HEO U18 AAA League
  6. Sweaters: Every member of the home team, including goaltenders, must wear white coloured team sweaters issued by the team. The visiting team, including goaltenders, must wear distinctive dark-coloured sweaters issued by the team. Failure to comply with this rule may result in the immediate expulsion from the game of the offending player(s). In the case of matching or confusing colours, the Home Team must change. The referee will decide if a change is required.
  7. Handshake: Unless otherwise directed by the referee for safety or disciplinary reasons, the handshake shall take place at the CONCLUSION of each game.
  8. Team/Coach Penalties: The HEO U18 AAA League Playing Rules are designed to ensure fairness to all teams and players. Failure to abide by any of these rules may result in the FORFEITURE OF GAME POINTS and the SUSPENSIONS OF COACHES/TEAM OFFICIALS for at least the next meaningful league, playoff or special event game as determined by the HEO U18 AAA League Executive.
  9. Pre-game Activities: No team will be allowed to conduct a pre-game event that may affect the playing time of any league, playoff, or special league event games without prior written authorization by the League Executive.
  10. Roster Composition: Club teams may roster up to 18 local players and roster up 1 additional non-HEO registered players. A minimum of 17 must be registered and a maximum of 19 players from HEO. Club teams are expected to adhere to the roster composition of 7-9 fifteen year old’s. Both Club and School teams are expected to adhere to a maximum of 3 seventeen year old’s.



  1. Season: The League Executive shall determine the duration and format of both the League season and playoffs.
  2. Members: Teams willing to play league/playoff games through the Christmas, may do so providing that the Director of Hockey Operations has given permission and that both teams are in agreement.
  3. The League will host showcase events:
  4. The exact date(s) will be set by the Executive by the end of the month of May for the following year.
  5. ii) All Member teams are required to participate. Failure to do so could result in a fine and/or the possible suspension of the team or team officials.


  1. To the extent permitted at local arenas, the referee MUST be on the ice before the scheduled START TIME.
  2. Referees must be prepared to start game 15 minutes before the published start time if required.
  3. Should a no-show of officials occur, the home team must advise the Director of Hockey Operations within 24 hours. Games cancelled due to absent officials will be rescheduled by the Director of Hockey Operations and the home team.
  4. All games are to be played under a three-man system. However, if only two qualified officials are available, the game will be played with two officials. If only one qualified official is available, the game will be postponed.
  5. Referees Game Sheet Responsibility at the end of the game: The online game sheet must be reviewed and signed off by the Head Referee.
  6. Referees must adhere to a dress code established by the referee body when assigned HEO U18 AAA League regular season or playoff games
  7. Off-Ice Officials: Competent off-ice officials (i.e. PENALTY BOX ATTENDANT) must be provided by the home & visiting team for all games. Note: No appeal on the timing of the game will be heard if the team did not provide a PENALTY BOX ATTENDANT during the entire game.

NOTE: Penalty box attendant(s) are not timekeepers or scorekeepers.

  1. Referee Bookings: All assignments are requested through the designated contact of the league and teams are expected to be mindful of the availability of referees, there is a limited pool available weekdays between business hours and these requests may not be accommodated.


  1. Timing: Arena Clocks are considered the official timepiece for determining the scheduled start and end of all HEO U18 AAA LEAGUE regular season and playoff games.
  2. Start Time: The official START TIME for all League regular season and playoff games are as published on the League’s website. SPECIAL NOTE: The published start times are subject to change if needed. Teams playing in the 2nd and subsequent games (where multiple games are played back to back on the same ice surface), must be ready to play 15 minutes before the published start time if required.
  3. Timing of Game: Three stop-time periods of 20 minutes, 20 minutes and 20minutes are used by the League. The ice is to be resurfaced at the end of the 2nd period unless otherwise directed by the League.
  4. Multiple Games Played Back-to-Back: Where HEO U18 AAA league or playoff games are played back-to-back on the same ice surface, consideration will be given to flooding the ice after every 2 periods of play. Note: In this case, the overtime and shootout are consider part of the 3rd period. 
  5. Warm-Up: A five 5minute warm-up will commence at the scheduled START TIME of the game where time is not considered an issue.
  6. Timeouts: Each team is permitted one (1) timeout of 30 seconds in any HEO U18 AAA league regular season or play-off game.
  7. Game Tied at the End of Regulation Play: Where a game is tied after the 3rd period, the following is to occur:
    1. Prior to the end of the overtime period, coaches are to provide their player list identifying order of shooting should a shootout be required to the timekeeper/scorer. This list is to include all non-goaltenders registered on the game record. Any player who, at the end of the overtime period, is still serving a penalty is NOT eligible to participate in the shootout. If a player was penalized during overtime and there is still time remaining in his penalty at the end of overtime, that player is not eligible to participate in the shootout.
    2. One sudden-death 5-Minute stop time overtime period will be played with teams playing three (3) skaters plus a goaltender. Goalies will defend the same end of the rink as they did in the 3rd period. Should a team incur a penalty, the opposing team will add a 4th skater until the penalized player returns to the ice. At the first whistle after the return of the penalized player, both teams will return to 3 on 3.
  • If still tied at the end of overtime, a Shootout with the first 3 skaters identified for each team will take place. The team that scores the most goals with these three skaters will be declared the winner. The HOME team will have the option of shooting first or last. Once the order is determined, it will remain the same for all future rounds of the shootout. A player from one team will go, followed by a player from the other team, and so on until all 3 designated players have shot.
  1. If tied after the initial 3 shooters are completed, a sudden-death shootout with one player from each team will proceed. The list provided by each coach identifies the order of the players. Each shooter must not have participated in any prior round of the shootout. Whichever team shot first in the previous round, will once again shoot first.
  2. Repeat point immediately above until no skater remains that has yet to participate. At this point, the shootout will continue following the same order as was started with the initial 3 shooters
  1. Completed Game: All regular season and playoff games are to be played to completion. However, a regular season game will be considered completed if a minimum of one-half of the allocated stop time has been completed. In playoffs, a game is considered completed if two periods of stop time have been completed. Causes for ice to be “unavailable for play” includes power failures, unsafe ice, serious injury, etc. The timekeeper must note the stop times at the occurrence of the interruption, and the time it was cleared. A major altercation resulting in an interruption of the game is not considered as justification for the application of this rule. Any game that is not considered a completed game will be classified as a suspended game and will be replayed in its entirety. Any suspensions incurred during a non completed game remain in effect and must be served in the teams subsequent meaningful game.


  1. Timekeepers/Scorers: The Host Team must provide competent timekeeper(s) for all HEO U18 AAA League game and playoff games hosted at their given venue and must be clearly identified with contact number on the game sheet. League games at the Bell Sensplex or Richcraft Sensplex will have timekeepers provided by the league.
  2. Pre-Game Rosters: Prior to going to the game venue, timekeepers/scorers are responsible to print a “pre-game” roster from Pointstreak for each game they have been assigned. This is important in that this pre-game roster will be given to each team to identify their roster for the game, with affiliated players identified (AP), and suspensions being served (e.g. noted as “SUSP 1 of X”), etc. In addition it will be used as a basis to record rosters on LeagueStat.
  3. As a backup to the “pre-game” roster mentioned above, an “HEO “Official Game Report” can be used. Only players and bench staff actually participating in the game are to be listed. If using a printed scoresheet from LeagueStat, players and bench staff NOT participating in the game are to be crossed out. Affiliated players must be identified (AP), and suspensions being served (e.g. noted as “SUSP 1 of X”).


  1. Regardless of whichever method is used to obtain roster info from each team before the game, timekeeper/scorer is to record each team’s info accurately on LeagueStat. Timekeeper/scorer is to retain the “pre-game roster” or “Official Game Report” used as a basis to updated LeagueStat.


  1. The timekeepers/scorer must ensure all suspensions currently in force will be clearly shown on the online game sheet and signed by the REFEREE PRIOR to the BEGINNING of the game. In addition, all AFFILIATED PLAYERS must be clearly identified on the game sheet marked as “AP”.
  2. The timekeeper/scorer must ensure that any stop-time left over at the end of the game, is clearly noted on the online game sheet.
  3. The timekeeper/scorer records goals and assists as instructed by the referee.
  4. The timekeeper/scorer records all penalties assessed by the referee in the correct manner, using the correct abbreviations.
  5. The timekeeper/scorer will ensure that the buzzer to end the third period is sounded as soon as the correct stop time for the third period has expired. Should an overtime period be required, he/she will ensure that the buzzer to end the overtime period is sounded as soon as the correct stop time for that period has expired.
  6. The timekeeper/scorer records the end time of the game on the online game sheet.
  7. The timekeeper/scorer ensures that the online game sheet is signed-off by the referee and linesmen prior to final sign off.
  8. The timekeeper/scorer must enter the start and end time of each game on the game sheet. The start time is the same as the scheduled game time unless a change has occurred. The timekeeper is additionally responsible for monitoring running time with a stopwatch & or wristwatch that has the same capability as a stopwatch.
  9. The stopwatch or wristwatch or run-time clock is started at the scheduled game time; this clock is started at the warm-up. The timekeeper must sound the buzzer at least 30 seconds prior to the end of the warm-up to prepare the teams for the start of the game.
  10. After the warm-up, the timekeeper/scorer enters the applicable stop time on the clock and re-starts the GAME clock for the first period as soon as the referee drops the puck.
  11. Delayed Games: If, for any valid reason i.e. bad weather, arena staff, injury in previous game, etc. the start of the game is significantly delayed, the game end time can be extended if an agreement is reached between coaches, arena staff and officials. Both coaches must indicate their awareness of the delay and/or extension by signing the game sheet start time/end time prior to the start of play. At the discretion of the two head coaches, they can modify the 5 minute warm-up. The game must be played and the HEO U18 AAA League will make a ruling as to its outcome. It is the timekeeper’s/scorer’s responsibility to ensure that any changes to the published start time is duly noted on the game sheet in the event there is a disagreement and a formal protest is lodged. If a game starts late, and no agreement has been reached to change the official start time and end time, then the game must end at the originally scheduled time

SPECIAL NOTE: If a League representative is in attendance, that person can decide on how to proceed. If no rep is in attendance, then a member of the League Executive must be informed immediately (in order: President, Vice-President, Director of Hockey Operations, Director of Risk and Discipline, Director of Communications, Treasurer, and Secretary.

  1. Clock Failure: If the arena time clock fails, the referee must consult with the timekeeper to ensure that a stopwatch or wristwatch with stop capabilities is used to complete the timing of the game. (See Section 6 7: Timekeeping Rules) If stop time cannot be recorded, the game will use running time with an adjustment to the penalties. Two (2) minute penalties become three (3) minutes in length; five (5) minute penalties becomes seven (7). Ten (10) minute penalties will remain ten (10) minutes. Should the clock fail at any time when there is a penalty, the remaining time will be multiplied by 1.5 and served at running time under the appropriate penalty rule.(i.e. Player A has 1:14 remaining in penalty when the clock fails. Upon game restart the penalty time will be set for 1:51 of running time.)


  1. Inclement Weather Re-scheduling:
    1. Team Liaisons must contact the Director of Hockey Operations, or Vice-President, who have the authority to postpone games due to weather conditions.
    2. If the Director of Hockey Operations or Vice-President cannot be reached, team officials must contact the League President, Vice-President, Director of Risk and Discipline, Director of Communications, Treasurer, or Secretary, who also have the authority to postpone games.
  • The League official contacted in the point above will then contact the Referee Scheduler to advise the officials that the game has been postponed and will be re-scheduled.
  1. NOTE: At no time may a team postpone a game on its own. If this is done the team will be subject to fine or suspension.


  1. All scheduled games MUST be played regardless of whether the outcome of the game will affect the status of the league standings. Unless determined otherwise by the League Executive, failure to complete all scheduled games may result in suspension of the coach and/or the loss of points.
  2. All divisions of the HEO U18 AAA League must complete their regular league schedule by the final date determined by the League Executive under rule 3. e) (Season)


  1. Regular season, playoff or special league event games take precedence over tournaments and exhibition games. Teams that place a priority over games other than those in the league against the direction of the Director of Hockey Operations will forfeit points and the responsible coach will be suspended.
  2. Should there arise a case for a team wishing to attend an event that is counter to the rule above, the team must formally ask the League Executive for such an exemption, and receive a formal confirmation from the League. Any request of this type must be filed at least three (3) weeks before the regular season, or special league event game, that would be impacted.


  1. Each team is to have a designated representative who will be responsible to enter all suspendable infractions (Misconducts, Game Misconducts, Gross Misconducts and Match Penalties) incurred by any of their players or team officials into the Suspension Reporting database during league, playoff, exhibition, special event and out-of-league play to the league within 24 hours of the completion of the game.
  2. The Suspension Reporting database will determine the minimum suspensions (if any) and notify all interested parties, including team’s head coach, team liaison, Director of Risk & Discipline and Director of Hockey Operations.
  3. Teams requesting video review for the suspension must send the request within 24 hours.






  1. Regular Season and Playoff Games


  1. Timekeeper/Scorer:
  • At the end of the game, the timekeeper/scorer is to have the referee review, amend as needed, and approve the results as posted on Pointstreak. To do this, the referee will “approve” the results directly on Pointstreak.
  • Note: The actual updating of results to the LeagueStat database can be done immediately where direct access to Pointstreak is available online. Where internet access is not available, game results are to be recorded “off-line”. Once access to the internet is available, the game results can then be updated to the LeagueStat database.
  1. Referee:
  • Before the game, verify that the number of players listed by the timekeeper/scorer correlates with the number of players dressed for each team. Same goes for the number of bench staff listed.
  • After the game, review the game results as recorded on LeagueStat by the timekeeper/scorer. Any corrections will then be made directly to the LeagueStat game record. Once referee is satisfied with the results on LeagueStat, the referee will “approve” the game results by signing off directly on LeagueStat.
  • At this point, the game record on LeagueStat becomes the “Official Record” for the game.
  • League Statistician:
  • The league statistician is responsible to review the results on LeagueStat for every completed game for accuracy and consistency. If necessary, the league statistician will provide feedback to timekeepers/scorers as needed.

             iii.        Team Liaisons:

  • After the game, any goals or assists awarded incorrectly may be submitted to the league for review. The submission must be within 48 hours of the game and include the video clip.


  1. Tournaments

No team will be permitted to enter any tournaments, unless otherwise approved by the League.


  1. Team Responsibilities if attending a tournament:
    • When playing in a sanctioned tournament, participating teams are responsible to do the following:
    • Obtain a Travel Permit if the tournament is being played outside HEO boundaries
    • Record any suspendable infractions incurred in any tournament game by players or bench staff on the Suspension Database as soon as possible after completion of each game in which such infractions were incurred.
    • Send an electronic copy of each “official game report” provided to the team by the tournament for every game played, to the Director of Hockey Operations. This is to be done within 2 days of the completion of the tournament.


  1. Exhibition Games and/or Special Event Games


  1. Teams playing exhibition games are responsible to:
    • Obtain a Travel Permit if the game is being played outside HEO boundaries
    • Send an electronic copy of the “official game report” (scoresheet) to the Director of Hockey Operations within 24 hours of the completion of the game
    • Record any suspendable infractions incurred in the game by players or bench staff on the Suspension Database as soon as possible after completion of the game and within 24 hours of the completion of the game.
  2. Note: for a special event game, the “team coach” of record is responsible to ensure any suspendable infraction incurred is added to the Suspension Database.

NOTE: PLAYERS UNDER SUSPENSION ARE NOT ELIGIBLE  to play exhibition games or special event games.


Information will be made available soon.



  1. Completion of Playoffs: Winner must be declared (7) days prior to the start of the Central Canada Regionals.
  2. End of Season Standings: If ties occur at the conclusion of the regular season, ties within a division will be broken among the teams that are tied in the following order of precedence: Review the following criteria
    1. Team with most wins overall
    2. Team with most wins against other tied teams
    3. Team with best plus/minus record (goals-for less goals-against = plus/minus rating)


  1. Expediting Completion of Playoff Games: If, in the opinion of the league Executive, the playoffs are being delayed because of unavailability of ice, the League may direct that playoff games be played at any venue within the Branch.


  1. Timeline: The Telus Cup qualifier games will be hosted from the end of the regular season in early March to the end of March, games may be played over March Break.
  2. Playoff Qualifying Round:
    1. A “Play-in Game” will be included to allow for the Playoff Qualifying Round to proceed with eight (8) teams. This game will have the #3 and #4 teams from the Academy Division playing, with the winner advancing to the Playoff Qualifying Round.
    2. The Playoff Qualifying Round will include the winner of the “play-in game” and the remaining 7 teams that have not earned a spot directly into the Championship Tournament.
  • The eight (8) teams will then play a one-game quarter-final with the four (4) winning teams advancing. The four teams will then play a one-game semi-final with the two (2) winning teams advancing to a single game final. The winner of that game will then advance to the Championship Tournament.




  1. To determine the Branch Representative, the following order of precedence applies from the Telus Cup qualifier games.
    1. Playoff winner
    2. Playoff finalist
  2. Note: Academy teams are ineligible to represent the branch at any Provincial/Regional Championship and do not participate in the Telus Cup qualifier games.
  3. In the event that two Academy teams qualify for the finals, the league Executive will arrange a play-off game between the two teams eliminated in the semi-finals to declare a branch representative.



APPEALS: (see Annex 1 for prescribed procedures) the appellant must submit all game protests or appeals to the League within 72 hours after the completion of the game that is in dispute. All appeals must be in writing, submitted to the Director of Risk & Discipline, of the HEO U18 AAA League (Chairperson of the Appeal Committee). A fee in the form of a cheque payable to the HEO U18 AAA LEAGUE in the amount of $150.00 dollars must accompany the appeal letter. All letters of appeal must clearly state the grounds upon which the appeal is being made and what aspect of the game, in particular is being appealed. At its discretion, the league will determine whether or not the appeal will be heard by the league. Appeals of a frivolous or trivial nature will not be heard. The league will not hear “timing” protests unless the protesting team had a representative in the penalty box for the duration of the game (Rule 6f). League timekeepers are representatives of the League and not the team’s team.

ANNEX 1 – Appeal Procedures


GENERAL: The Appeals Committee will comprise a minimum of three (3) members plus the Chairperson. Prior to each Appeal hearing, the Chairperson will select the Appeal Committee members drawn from the sitting members of the league Executive or Operations Committee. In the selection of these members, the Chairperson will exclude any person who may have any real, potential or perceived conflict-of-interest. The Chairperson of the Committee will be the Director of Risk & Discipline of the League. Appeals will be held as required, at times and places to be determined by the Chairperson. In the event that the Chairperson is unable to attend an appeal hearing, or for any other reason, the Chairperson may appoint an acting Chairperson drawn from sitting members of the Executive.


The hearing procedures will be as follows:

1) The nature of the appeal will be summarized by the Chairperson who may call upon any witnesses to give testimony;

2) The Appellant or Representative will be provided an opportunity to present the case, to substantiate the nature of the appeal, to call witnesses and to ask questions;

3) Committee members, including non-voting League members and all witnesses will have the opportunity to ask questions and to explore in detail the nature of the appeal;

4) The Appellant or Representative will have the opportunity to summarize the case:

5) Voting by the Committee Members will take place, in camera, at the conclusion of the hearing. A simple majority will determine the outcome;

6) When the decision of the Appeals Committee is in favour of the appellant, one half of the appeal fee will be returned. In the event that appeal is not won, the appeal fee will be retained by the HEO MIDGET U18 LEAGUE.

7) The result of the appeal will be forwarded to the Appellant or Representative in written form within 48 hours from the conclusion of the appeal. Copies will also be forwarded to Committee Members, Appellant’s Association League representative and the Secretary of the HEO U18 AAA League. If time is of the essence, the Chairperson may provide a verbal decision to the Appellant followed up by the written decision.

8) The decision of the HEO U18 AAA League Appeal’s Committee is final subject to further appeal to the HEO MINOR under prevailing appeal rules and guidelines of that Association.

9) Appeals should be forwarded to:

HEO U18 AAA League

Director of Risk & Discipline (see website for contact information).


Participation in the HEO U18 AAA program is on a totally voluntary basis.  When a team selects a player, the team is making a commitment to that player for the entire hockey season.  As such the player (and their family and/or guardian) who agrees to participate is expected to have the same level of commitment.  It is the League’s policy that refunds of registration fees will not be made.

However, it is recognized that extreme circumstances may occur.  The League may at its discretion, issue a partial refund of registration fees paid.  The amount of the refund will be calculated by the League, generally as described below.

Requests for refunds will be submitted by the player’s parents and/or guardian, in writing to the League President along with sufficient documentation to support the request.  Medical related requests must be supported by a physician’s certification that the illness or injury is season ending.  Short term illness or injury is not considered reason for a refund.  The League Governance committee will decide on the merits of the request.

As of the date of the request the player will immediately stop participating in any team activities.  This does not constitute a player release under HEO or HEO Minor.

Refunds will be calculated based on the registration fees paid, net of any fund raising, less the following costs prorated over the team’s regular season games:

  • Administration fee – $300.00
  • Hockey Canada insurance
  • HEO and HEO Minor fees
  • Non-recoverable costs and expenses incurred by the team or league






Date Version Changes
League Start Date – September 2015 V5 Initial Rules Posted
August 14th, 2019 V6 Changes:
3J: Roster Composition5h: Referees11: Suspension Reporting12a3: game reporting requirements13: Playoff Championship14 d, e: Telus Cup Qualifiers

15: Branch Representative