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My insane (but awesome) shootout solution

Apr 9, 2010, 3:45 PM EDT

Look, the shootout was an absolutely adorable little confection coming out of the lockout. It was a cutesy way for the league to avoid the dreaded “kissing sister” effect* while also giving fans a final jolt of excitement at the end of the games – certainly a worthwhile endeavor considering the oozing wounds left behind by the lockout. But, come on people, it’s been five long seasons and it’s time to acknowledge the fact that there’s a mountainous difference between a real win and a win in that glorified skills competition.

Many level-headed individuals have hatched sensible solutions. Some want a system that awards 3 points for a regulation or overtime win, 2 points for a shootout win and 1 for a regulation or overtime loss. Others would just prefer to revert to the old system of 2 points for a regulation win, 1 point for losing in OT/kissing your sister* and none for losing normally.

* – It’s probably relevant to point out that kissing your sister means ending a game in a tie. We here at PHT do not endorse incest or any of its by-products.

Well, you know what? In this case I call shenanigans on all of those solutions. That’s right: those ideas are Hogwash. Balderdash!

Instead, the league needs to roll up its sleeves and be men (or adults?) about this one. I’m simply tired of sports teams getting away with playing not to lose. So what do I propose? If you win, you get whatever points the league wants. Why? Because you get nothing for a tie. You get nothing if you lose. You win or you get NOTHING.

Yup, that’s right. The real solution is to simply go for an all-or-nothing approach. Can you imagine how much more exciting hockey could be if teams had no choice but to actually go for the win (instead of trying to hold on for a tie or the coin flip that is a shootout)? Maybe teams would still go into trap mode, but at least they wouldn’t be encouraged to play coward hockey all the time.

Now, I acknowledge that this is a fairly bold solution, but I think that’s what makes it spectacular. After all, this is a sport in which people grow beards for good luck. That’s just awesome, folks. However, I imagine that there are plenty of dissenters out there so I’m willing to be proven wrong. What do you think the league should do to curb its ever-increasing trend of teams settling for charity points? Vote in the poll below. Heck, you can even try to come up with something I hadn’t considered if you’re feeling especially frisky.

  1. Schank - Apr 9, 2010 at 4:39 PM

    Why not just have 2 points for a win and no points for a loss? You think you deserve a point for running the trap and playing for overtime? Go to hell. Win or go home ladies. This argument that you got a point for a tie and should therefore get a point for 5 minutes of extra play is not convincing. There is a clear winner and loser and losers should be punished accordingly. Enough with the calculations, if you lose, you get nothing. Zero. The End.

  2. Matt - Apr 9, 2010 at 4:42 PM

    Either 3-2-1-0, 2-1 for each-0 or your 2-0 approach is fine by me. As long as the same number of points are awarded, I really don’t care.
    It just needs to be fixed….yesterday.

  3. Schank - Apr 9, 2010 at 4:47 PM

    Hit Submit before I finished. You are right on. I think was Jasper’s Rink that showed the calculation without the loser point (and the 3,2,1 system) and the standing were relatively unchanged, aside from the cluster in the middle of the east. This attempt at a turgid form of parity doesn’t make sense. We all know that the teams on the bubble are not going to make it, why continue the masquerade?

  4. James O'Brien - Apr 9, 2010 at 4:58 PM

    Exactly my point Mr. Schank. Then again, it could be 50 points for a win since you really are just counting wins at that stage.

  5. Quisp - Apr 9, 2010 at 5:29 PM

  6. Mr. Anderson - Apr 10, 2010 at 10:18 AM

    Why not three points for a win and one for a tie? Forget overtime and the shootout. That’s the way they do it in European football.

  7. Schiver - Apr 12, 2010 at 9:28 AM

    Two different solutions:
    1) If the NHL wants to keep the shootout, then make it 2 points for a regulation win, no points for OT loss, and 1 point for shootout loss, since it’s a coin toss anyway.
    2) Get rid of the stupid shootout and if the game is tied after one OT, play a second 5-minute period 3-on-3. One team is sure to score quickly in that case.

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