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An instigator of an altercation is a player who demonstrates any of the following actions: distance travelled; gloves off first; first punch thrown; menacing attitude. A player deemed an instigator will receive an instigating minor penalty. A player who instigates a fight in the final five minutes of a game (or in overtime in the regular season) will instead be charged a game misconduct and given an automatic one-game suspension. The length of the suspension would double for each additional incident. The player's coach will be fined $10,000, a penalty that would double for each recurrence.

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