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Even Dave Nonis doesn’t want so many shootouts

Jan 16, 2014, 5:43 PM EDT

Dave Nonis AP

Even though his team has an NHL-high nine victories in the shootout, Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis would like to see fewer games decided in the breakaway competition.

“As much as we’re having success in the shootout, I still believe that I’d like to end the game by playing a game,” Nonis said Thursday on TSN 1050 radio. “So 4-on-4, 3-on-3, those are things we see throughout the course of the season and regular hockey. So for me, if we could get to that, I would still prefer to go to 3-on-3 before the shootout.”

The Washington Capitals are another team that’s done well in the shootout this season. Similarly, that doesn’t mean their head coach, Adam Oates, likes games decided that way.

“I don’t believe in them,” Oates said late last year. “I know the fans like it, but that’s because it has kind of a carnival effect. I mean, I get it. It’s in the rules, but maybe because I never played with it, I don’t really like it very much.”

We touched on the shootout extensively in this week’s Chip ‘n’ Chase, so if you haven’t already, please do give it a read.

Bottom line: a lot of fans like the shootout, but the more we hear from those involved in the game, including the players, we have to wonder if we’ll see 3-on-3 overtime sooner rather than later.

Related: 3-on-3 overtime gaining support among GMs?

  1. penguins87and71 - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:03 PM

    So how is the 3 on 3 overtime better than the shootout? I’d rather see the NHL keep it at 4 on 4 or move it to 5 on 5. I kind of have a problem with shootouts, but the bigger problem I have is the point system in the NHL.

    • charlieconway96 - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:11 PM

      Just thinking out loud here but why not make OT 10 minutes of 4 on 4? Or two 5 minute periods, the second one being 3 on 3? And I agree, the point system is bogus.

      • bwayblueshirt - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:20 PM

        Main problem is that the condition of the ice degrades over that 10 minutes. I despise shootouts, but short of a full intermission to Zamboni the ice, I don’t know what else could be done. What we need is a point system that rewards regulation victories more than OT/SO decisions.

    • joey4id - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:39 PM

      I believe the NHL will only get rid of the SO if fans, and teams accept the eventuality of a tie. Keep in mind that NHL teams travel after games, and many times they play 2 games in two cities within 24 hours. This means that they cannot keep playing until there is a winner, otherwise they risk games being overly long causing travel delays. The 3 on 3 should provide more scoring chances just like the 4 on 4 provides more scoring opportunities than the 5 on 5. So, it makes sense to A) start with a 4 on 4 for 5 mins and then move on to a 3 on 3, followed by a SO if the previous 2 options failed to provide winner. B) 10 mins OT 3 on 3, then a SO if the game is still tied. Additonally, they need a way to incite teams to win in 60 mins. So, 3 pts for a win in 60 mins, 2 points for a win in OT or SO. Award one point to each team if the score is tied at the end of OT, and 1 point to the winner of in the SO.

  2. newjerseydevilsfanpuckcollection - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:06 PM

    It really does need to go.

    The shoot-out as you can see can make or break your team. Toronto would be nowhere near where it should be in the standings with 9 SO wins.

    In theory they would be 9 points less (if they did end up with a tie at the end of OT) They would be 12th in the East.

    Where a team like New jersey would be closer to 6th in the east with not winning one SO.

    I am not complaining based on the fact that I am a NJ fan…I just think the SO should have never been implemented to begin with.

    There is no clear cut winner or loser in my opinion and it should be a tie. Not forcing one of the teams to win.

    • withseidelinn - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:12 PM

      You can’t assume NJ would win every single game they lost in the SO… haha

  3. penguins87and71 - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:09 PM

    No. I’d rather see the shootout stay than have a tie. If I’m paying my own hard cash to go see a NHL game I want to see a team that win the game not a tie.

  4. bwayblueshirt - Jan 16, 2014 at 6:38 PM

    Here’s what you need:

    Reg: 3/0
    OT/SO: 2/1

    Imagine teams lower in the standings coming hard to get that extra 3rd point to try and climb up. This is not my idea, but I like it more than the current situation.

    Or have the shooters in the shootout randomly selected by jersey number or something.

    • comeonnowguys - Jan 17, 2014 at 9:57 AM

      Agreed. So much simpler than ROW, and it gives more incentive to not turtle in the third period for the Pity Point.

  5. hockeydon10 - Jan 17, 2014 at 9:44 AM

    4-on-4 – more space for faster hockey
    10 minutes – more time to generate scoring opportunities
    Long change (like 2nd period) – defenders get tired quicker with long change

    I think adding these last two will end up causing a lot more non-shoot out games.

    IIRC, this is exactly what GM Lou talked about a few months ago. Smart man.

    Also, I’d make penalties a sort of ‘coach’s choice’. Either take the 2 minute power play or the guy fouled gets a penalty shot. A cement handed grinder gets fouled take the 2 minutes. A star gets fouled take the penalty shot. Generates discussion about why a coach may have chosen one or the other. Generates excitement when penalty shot is chosen.

    These things would cause a lot more W/L games than SO games. If tied after this then go to shootout.

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