You won’t find many NHL players, coaches, or fans that actually enjoy seeing games end with a shootout. Add Edmonton Oilers superstar Connor McDavid to the list. On Friday, McDavid appeared on “Tim and Friends” and gave his brutally honest opinion on overtime finishing with a shootout, urging the NHL to get rid of it altogether and opt for a longer 3-on-3.
“No one loves the shootout,” McDavid said. “It’s a crappy way to finish a game.”
And while McDavid did mention there is certainly more of a health risk pushing OT to 10 minutes instead of five, the two-time Hart Trophy winner still believes it’s a better solution:
“At the end of the day, also, it’s about the players’ health and safety,” McDavid said. “It’s a long season. The overtime, it taxes a lot of guys. So, making that longer could have some effects there.
“But I agree, no one wants to see the game end in a shootout.”
The NHL brought in the shootout way back in 2005 after a five-minute overtime period. The 3-on-3 idea wasn’t put in place in the league until the 2015-2016 campaign. 5-on-5 remains intact during the playoffs, though, with 20-minute periods until either team scores.
There is no question it’s a lot more entertaining for fans to see just six players battle it out on the ice, especially with so much exciting talent all over the NHL, headlined by McDavid. At first, the shootout was an intriguing way to end contests, but that novelty is gone.
The question remains, will Gary Bettman and Co. actually listen to Connor McDavid, the face of the league? That remains to be seen. So far in the 2022-23 season, 45 games have ended via shootout. And ever since 3-on-3 overtime became a thing, more and more NHL fans have their eyes absolutely locked on the TV screen because of the fast-paced, end-to-end hockey.
Perhaps a change could be coming in the near future.