Your perfect NHL – Part 2

This is part two of this week’s “what would your perfect NHL look like?”

Tuesday – Part 1 (Season length and divisions)

Over the course of this week, I’m going to touch on each of the following topics, and get your opinions as well:

  • Season length
  • Point system
  • Number of playoff teams
  • Overtime/shootout
  • Conferences/divisions

Here are today’s topics:

Overtime/Shootout: Ties don’t belong in hockey, which is why I’m a fan of the shootout. Saying that, shootout don’t benefit every team. There are certain teams that just haven’t done well in shootouts over the years. Washington (30-42), Philadelphia (23-41) and Florida (30-55) all have struggled since the shootout was implemented. Then there are the teams that have excelled, like New Jersey (54-29), Pittsburgh (51-30) and Colorado (46-25).

I think the perfect NHL would keep the shootout, but it is the overtime that should be changed. After the third period ends, I would like to see a full intermission. Following that would be a 5-minute 4-on-4 overtime session. If no one scores, a 5-minute 3-on-3 session. If still tied, then go right to the shootout. The reason I’d want a full intermission is so they don’t have clean the middle of the ice prior to the shootout.

If you have other suggestions for how overtime/shootouts should be handled, please leave a comment.


Penalties in overtime: This is something that I think would have an impact. If a player takes a penalty late in overtime, I believe that team should have to go without a shooter in the shootout. For example, let’s say Steve Ott takes a penalty with 20 seconds remaining in overtime and neither team scores in those last 20 seconds. Buffalo would have to go with two shooters in the shootout. Ott could still be a shooter, but Buffalo would be at a disadvantage (as they should because they took a penalty) as they would have two shooters to the opponent’s three.

There have been occasions where teams will do anything toward the end of overtime just to try and get to a shootout. Penalties don’t carryover. This would prevent that.

In case you’re interested, Buffalo 43-37 in shootouts.

Please leave a comment with your thoughts. Part 3 will be published tomorrow and Friday we will review everything to see what the majority of fans prefer.


Kevin Freiheit
Kevin Freiheit
I founded Buffalo Hockey Central in 2008 and have poured hours and hours into this site. Luckily, we have a great team of writers and designers who have helped keep this up and running despite a ton of out-of-pocket costs. We do this because we enjoy it, and we're desperate to see the Sabres win the Cup someday, but they have to make the playoffs first.
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