The National (ice) Hockey League begins a new drug testing program on Sunday. Players who test positive could face suspensions of up to 20 games for a first offense. A second offense carries a 60-game suspension and a third results in a permanent suspension.

The new anti-doping program had been delayed so players could be briefed on the banned drug list. Players will be tested randomly, up to twice a season. Banned substances include anabolic steroids and growth hormones. Not on the list are stimulants such as ephedrine, found in some cold medications.

Players will be able to appeal. But if the appeal is denied, or a player does not appeal, the league and the NHL Players Association will make a joint announcement.

Some information for this report provided by AFP.