NA3HL, NA3EHL adopts 3 on 3 OT, 3-man shootouts
August 18, 2015
The North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) and the North American 3 Eastern Hockey League (NA3EHL) have both announced that its membership has approved a change to the overtime and shootout format for the 2015-16 season. The 2015-16 NA3HL regular season begins on Friday, September 4th, while the 2015-16 NA3EHL regular season begins on Friday, September 11th.
The change in overtime for the 2015-16 season will see the NA3HL and NA3EHL go to a 3-on-3 sudden-death format for a five-minute period in regular-season games tied at the end of regulation. Previously, both leagues played 4-on-4 in overtime. Regular-season games tied at the end of overtime will continue to be decided by a shootout. The shootout during the 2015-16 season will feature a three-man format. Previously, the leagues had used a five-man shootout system.
“The consensus among the membership and the Competition and Rules Committee was that a 3-on-3 overtime significantly increases the chances of a game-winning goal scored during the course of regular competition and all were in agreement with the steps the NAHL took in the same direction,” said NA3HL, NA3EHL Commissioner Denny Scanlon. “While the shootout is exciting and an extended way to determine the outcome of a regular season game, statistics show that moving to a 3-on-3 overtime potentially increases the number of overtime goals significantly. I think the fans will really enjoy it because the ice will open up and the players and goalies skill will be on full display.”
These are the same rules in place as adopted by the National Hockey League (NHL) earlier this summer. The 3-on-3 overtime is designed to create more space on the ice, allowing for more goals to be scored and more games ending in overtime rather than the shootout.
Last season, 104 of the 730 NAHL regular season games (14%) were decided in either overtime of a shootout. Of those 104 games decided in overtime or a shootout, 52 of the games ended in a shootout (52%), while 52 of the games ended in overtime (50%).