Nichol named head of player development; Visors “grandfathered” in

Wednesday, the Nashville Predators announced former-Pred Scott Nichol was named Director of Player Development. Nichol played 209 games with the Predators totaling 47 points (24g, 23a). His specialty was in the faceoff dot and on the penalty kill.

Nichol’s job will be to develop prospects in the organization and turn them into NHL-ready players. He will hold a major role in this summer’s development camp from July 7-14. According to the press release, Nichol will be in Newark on draft day—June 30.

Although his family currently lives in Rochester, New York, Nichol finds Nashville to be a “home away from home”. During the May floods in 2010 when Nichol was playing for the San Jose Sharks at the time, he donated a large sum of money to help victims devastated.

The National Hockey League and its Player Association agreed to “grandfather” in visors Tuesday afternoon. According to John Shannon of Sportsnet, 80% of players polled by the NHLPA agreed to grandfather visors into the league.

Every player entering the league next season will be required to wear a visor. Players who have played 26 NHL games or more will not be forced to wear the attached protection on the helmet. That includes regular season and playoff games.

For the Nashville Predators, the new rule will affect very few, if any.

The mandatory visor rules in the juniors, minors and European leagues have certainly had an impact on players’ decisions to wear the career saving equipment.

Along with the new visor rule, the league’s competition committee discussed other potential rule changes. listed the following.

— All double minor penalties for high-sticking will be subject to video review.

— The League will eliminate the attainable pass, which gave linesmen the discretion to wave off icing infractions on attempted passes that are deemed to be attainable. With the new standard, there must be contact with the stick.

— The NHL will experiment with hybrid icing in the preseason before a decision will be made by the Board of Governors on whether to carry it into the regular season or maintain the current standard.

— A sub-committee will be formed as early as next week to study all equipment worn by goaltenders and skaters. Schneider said all equipment will be examined.

— Beginning next season, the NHL could use nets that are 4 inches shallower. Nets will still be 6 feet wide by 4 feet tall, but they will be 40 inches in depth, down from 44 inches.