What if the NHL did away with the overtime ‘loser’ point?

One subject that circles around the world of NHL hockey is the discussion of how points are calculated in the standings. As you know, currently 2 points are doled out for wins…a single point if you lose in overtime or the shootout. This formula comes from the past when games ending in a tie score remained so without the need for overtime or the shootout to break it. As such, two points were given for wins and one for each team in games that end in a draw. When the league pushed to insure all games have a declared “winner”, they kept the extra point for teams that lost in extra time…as they would have gained that point in the “old way” of calculating the standings.

However, this point awarded for simply getting the game into overtime before eventually losing is what I call the consolation “loser point”.

Many I’ve spoken to about this cite the inequity of having some games worth 2 points, those that end in regulation…and some games being worth three, such as with any overtime games. To make things more fair, some argue for a three point standard where 3 points are awarded to winners in regulation and doing the 2/1 split when it goes to OT. To be honest…I would prefer this to the current system.

Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals would still be atop the Eastern Conference if only wins and losses counted in the standings...but would that lead be as comfortable? (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals would still be atop the Eastern Conference if only wins and losses counted in the standings...but would that lead be as comfortable? (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

However, another argument is that if the league is going to insist that each game has a “winner”, then each game must simply have a “loser”…and as such, simply do away with the consolation “loser point”, then go with Ws and Ls. Nothing more, nothing less.

But if the league adopted such a change, would it make much of a difference in the way the standing look today with the current points system?

Well… let’s take a look, shall we, by reviewing theNHL division and conference standings as it looks now that we’ve reached the Olympic break.

In the east, the division leaders…and top-three playoff seeds…are Washington, (90 points)… New Jersey, (77)… and Ottawa, (76). The teams currently holding the wild card positions are Pittsburgh, (76)… Buffalo, (75)… Philadelphia, (67)… Boston, (65)…and Montreal (64). Those on the outside looking in are Tampa Bay, (63)… NY Rangers (63)…Atlanta, (62)…Florida, (58)…NY Islanders, (58)…Carolina, (55)…and Toronto (49).

Out west, it’s San Jose, (89 points), Chicago, (87) and Vancouver, (76) as the division leaders and top-three seeds. The wild card teams are Phoenix, (79)…Los Angeles, (78)…Colorado, (76)…Nashville, (71)…and Calgary (69). Those below the playoff line are Dallas, (68)…Detroit, (68)…Anaheim, (67)…St. Louis, (65)…Minnesota, (64)…Columbus, (60)…and Edmonton, (44).

Now…let’s see how the standings would take shape if only Ws and Ls were taken into consideration. Overtime losses are the same as regulation losses…you know, just like overtimes wins are just like regulation wins.

In this system, the standings would resemble those of Major League Baseball or the NBA…wins, losses and winning percentages are all that matters. Then, there is a calculation of “games behind” for all those who are not in first place.


Atlantic Division

Team                             W            L            Win %            GB    

New Jersey                   37            24            .607            —

Pittsburgh                     36            26            .581            1.5

Philadelphia                  32            28            .533            4.5

NY Rangers                  28            34            .452            9.5

NY Islanders                 25            37             .403            12.5

Northeast Division

Team                           W            L            Win %            GB    

Ottawa                         36            27            .571            —

Buffalo                         33            27            .550            1.5

Montreal                      29            34            .460            7.0

Boston                         27            33            .450            7.5

Toronto                        19            42            .311            16.0

 Southeast Division

Team                             W            L            Win %            GB    

Washington                  41            21            .661            —

Atlanta                          26            34            .433            14.0

Tampa Bay                   26            35            .426            14.5

Florida                          24            37            .393            16.5

Carolina                        24            37            .393            16.5

 Eastern Conference Playoff Standings – Division Leaders

Team                              W            L            Win %            GB    

1. Washington                41            21            .661            —

2. New Jersey                37            24            .607            —

3. Ottawa                       36            27            .571            —

Eastern Conference Playoff Standings – Wild Card

Team                              W            L            Win%            GB    

4. Pittsburgh                 36            26            .581            —

5. Buffalo                      33            27            .550            2.0

6. Philadelphia             32            28            .533            3.0

7. Montreal                   29            34            .460            7.5

8. NY Rangers              28            34            .452            8.0

- – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – -

9. Boston                     27            33            .450            8.0

10. Atlanta                   26            34            .433            9.0

11. Tampa Bay             26            35            .426            9.5

12. NY Islanders          25            37             .403           11.0

13. Florida                   24            37            .393            11.5

14. Carolina                 24            37            .393            11.5

15. Toronto                  19            42            .311            16.5



Central Division

Team                            W            L            Win %            GB    

Chicago                       41            20            .672             —

Nashville                      33            28            .541            8.0

Detroit                          28            33            .459            13.0

St. Louis                       28            34            .452            13.5

Columbus                     25            38            .397            17.0

Northwest Division

Team                             W            L            Win%            GB    

Vancouver                    37            24            .607            —

Colorado                       35            25            .574            2.0

Minnesota                     30            31            .492            7.0

Calgary                          30            32            .484            7.5

Edmonton                      19            42            .311            18.0

Pacific Division

Team                            W            L            Win%            GB    

San Jose                       40            22            .645            —

Los Angeles                  37            24            .607            2.5

Phoenix                         37            26            .587            3.5

Anaheim                        30            32            .484            10.0

Dallas                            28            33            .459            11.5

Western Conference Playoff Standings – Division Leaders

Team                            W            L            Win %            GB    

1. Chicago                    41            20            .672            —

2. San Jose                   40            22            .645            —

3. Vancouver                37            24            .607            —

Western Conference Playoff Standings – Wild Card

Team                            W            L            Win%            GB    

4. Los Angeles             37            24            .607            —

5. Phoenix                    37            26            .587            1.0

6. Colorado                  35            25            .574            1.5

7. Nashville                  33            28            .541            4.0

8. Minnesota                30            31            .492            7.0

- – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - -

9. Anaheim                   30            32            .484            7.5

10. Calgary                  30            32            .484            7.5

11. Detroit                    28            33            .459            9.0

12. Dallas                     28            33            .459            9.0

13. St. Louis                 28            34            .452            9.5

14. Columbus               25            38            .397            12.0

15. Edmonton               19            42            .311            18.0 

As you can see, there is no change in regards to the teams that lead the six divisions. However, out west, Chicago would be the top seed…San Jose would be the second. It’s the opposite using today’s NHL point system method.

New Jersey would still be the number two seed in the east, but would trail first-seed Washington by just three games for the top spot in the conference. Right now, they trail the Caps by 13 points. This is because the Devils have just 3 overtime losses…the fewest in the NHL… while the Capitals have eight.

Also, there are some changes in division positioning…case in point, the Thrashers would be in second place in the Southeast and the Lighting would be third. They would also be in 10th place in the conference instead of 11th and just one game out of the final playoff spot.

The Rangers and Flyers also would switch places as would Boston and Montreal, LA and Phoenix as well as Dallas and Anaheim.

In the conference standings, Montreal would move from the eighth and final spot in the east up on notch to seventh…while Boston would fall from 7th to 9th and out of a playoff spot altogether. In their place would go the NY Rangers.

Martin Havlat, Guillaume Latendresse and the Minnesota Wild would benefit most in a Ws & Ls only environment (AP Photo/Tom Olmscheid)

Martin Havlat, Guillaume Latendresse and the Minnesota Wild would benefit most in a Ws & Ls only environment (AP Photo/Tom Olmscheid)

Out west, Minnesota would move all the way up from 13th to 8th, while Calgary would lose it’s playoff spot, going from 8th to 10th. The Wild only have 4 overtime losses, the Flames have 9.

The Dallas Stars and Detroit Red Wings are benefiting most from the current points system given they each have 12 overtime losses. This is why they are but 1 point removed from the playoffs. With just Ws and Ls considered, they drop to the 11th and 12th spots in the Western Conference…but still just 2 games out.

Also worth noting is how Carolina would not be alone in the southeast cellar…they would actually be tied with Florida. The Panthers currently posses 10 “loser” points while the Hurricanes have just 7.

175 comments Add your comment

J (Z)

February 15th, 2010
8:09 pm

Perty! Now how about standings if we used the olympic style 3 for a reg win, 2 for an OT win, 1 for an OTL????


February 15th, 2010
8:17 pm

The problem with the NHL is the consistant changes. The only rule that I think has been benefitial to the league is the 2 line pass. Go back to the old when you tie, you tie, and get 1 point each, win in OT you get 2, lose you get zilch zero nada nothing. If you want a definite winner, than the loser gets nothing. I don’t like the shootout myself. This is a TEAM sport, not an individual one. Give them 4 on 4, which I do enjoy, in OT for 10 minutes, and call it a game. 1 point each if no one has scored in 10 minutes.


February 15th, 2010
8:34 pm

I prefer this : 3 for regulation wins, 2 for OT win, 1 for shootout win, and 0 for losing. This encourages teams to win in regulation, and rewards them for being able to close the deal there. Only 2 points if you require extra time for that victory. 1 point if you had to go to the shootout. 0 for losing, because we don’t give out points for not winning.

If they don’t want to do that, they should simply do away with the shootout and OT and let there be ties/draws and simply accept it.

World Be Free

February 15th, 2010
9:00 pm

Nice work Bill-you are burning the midnight oil while Vivs takes a break. I say leave it the way it is with the loser point, because it’s tough to take something away once you put it in.

And I totally agree with rob on the two line pass. It really opens up the neutral zoner and keeps the d-men looking behind them. I played in a B league in the early 80’s that took out the center line. That is real tough on defenseman, especially on teams like the ones I played on with lazy forwards that don’t backcheck. You know, like Jagr, Ovechkin and Kovalchuk.


February 15th, 2010
9:02 pm

I LOVE this blog topic. And my vote does go to straight up wins and losses. And let me explain why.

When the CBA “allegedly, supposedly” leveled the ice surface between Detroit and Phoenix (Pfft!), the need for “pity points” disappeared, once you factor that the new CBA also introduced a shootout. Well, forgive me for stating something obvious. Ready for it? Every game is both “won” and “lost.” I can support the “pity point” system, but only to a degree, because it addresses the “financial inequities” that exist among teams. Even now, post lockout. When the floor of the cap exceeds the initial ceiling back in 2005, there’s plenty of financial disparity. Now, I hear ya, whoever just shouted, “But Brendan, there’s revenue sharing dollars getting pumped into Phoenix from Detroit, to the tune of $19 million. $17 million goes to Atlanta, etc.”

Well, do Phoenix and Atlanta, or even San Jose, spend to the cap limits? I guess, “sometimes yes” and “sometimes no” is the technical answer. But I’m not buying into revenue-sharing fixing everything. You’ve still got to attract Tier I players to your ARTIFICALLY PROPPED UP market. And that’s a tough sell. But I digress.

Even with the uphill ice surfaces that Atlanta, Edmonton, Buffalo, and Phoenix face, it actually doesn’t radically alter the outcome of shootouts. Bear with me. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that Edmonton is the smallest, poorest market in the NHL. And that … they have to resort to RFA offersheet tactics just to get a player like Dustin Penner into the fold. Still with me? Well, shouldn’t Edmonton’s record in shootouts be abysmal, since it’s so poor? And can’t attract top tiered talent? And so forth? Well, one might THINK that. But it’s simply NOT TRUE. The Edmonton Oilers are, historically, one of the very MOST SUCCESSFUL teams in the shootout. Detroit, for example, doesn’t really hold some shootout mastery statistic, despite their “windfall” of cashflow. If the Oilers face the Red Wings in a shootout, I’d actually bet on Edmonton to win it.

If someone can show me a valid statistic … that states that “poor teams have no shot against a RICH team,” then I’d have greater support for the “pity point.” Now, I do hear you, for those of you who just screamed, “But Brendan, just to GET to the shootout, or overtime, the POOR team had to skate uphill for 60 minutes. Before the puck was even dropped, the score read Detroit 2, Edmonton 0.” I’ll certainly listen to that as an argument. But Edmonton manages to get to overtimes and shootouts with pretty good consistency. And once there, tends to win. Moreover, what do the Oilers do with their revenue-sharing dollars??? Well, forgive me for suggesting that they should place them into payroll, to field a better team. And yes, I’m fully aware that the Oilers, like the Thrashers, have to OVERPAY to get good players to sign there. Or even mediocre ones, like Ron Hainsey. Fiiiiine.

But conceptually, forgetting the economics of the game, the mechanism is in place for wins and losses. Until the shootout goes away, we shouldn’t have to “prentend” that TIES still exist. They don’t. There are no TIES in the NHL, anymore. Let me state something for the record. “I never, ever viewed TIES as something evil or sinister, to be avoided AT ALL COSTS.” A “tie” was a perfectly fine outcome for a game, to me. But since the advent of the shootout, there’s NO PURPOSE to a “points system” for hockey. In fact, it NEEDLESSLY complicates things. For then… the mathematicians come out of the woodwork to explain what VALUE is. Sheesh. Spare me. I don’t want mathematical formulas, when the VALUE of a game, … is ONE GAME out of 82 on the schedule. You either win the game. Or you DON’T. And you face the CONSEQUENCES of losing it. If you FEAR the shootout, alter your strategy. Go balls to the wall in the 5-minute overtime, or gamble like crazy in the final 2-3 minutes of regulation time. For any way you lose the game, it’s still a LOSS, in the world of straight up “wins and losses.” But COURAGE isn’t the strongsuit of the NHL. They still have this misplaced notion of the “Welfare State.” There’s no longer a need for a “hand out” or “hand up.” Every single team … has the EXACT SAME salary parameters. And those who are poor, get revenue-sharing dollars. That owners decide to put those dollars into their back pockets instead of reinvesting it into team payroll … is a whole other issue. I think the NHL should FORCE the ownership to place every dollar they get in revenue-sharing into player salary. In short, I think every team in the whole league … should spend to the MAX CAP limit by the trade deadline, if they’re not already there, or close to being Maxed out, on “Opening Night.” Thus my concludes my seminar. Questions?


February 15th, 2010
9:49 pm

Brian, I think your post is an intriguing one. I’d support ditching the shootout, and sharing the points with a tie. But I just don’t see the NHL doing that, since the shootout generates SportsCenter highlights and visibility for the league. And fans seem to like it. Though, I’d be the first one to say that “hockey is a team game; wins in the standings shouldn’t be decided by an individual skills competition.” But the fact is, they ARE. When a team wins a shootout, it counts same as a regulation time win. I don’t like it. But I live with it.

Now, regarding your points system, of 3 for a regulation time win, 2 for an overtime win, and 1 for a shootout loss, with nothing for the loser, that does sound tempting. There will be a lot of support for that, I would think. But it’ll bring out the mathematicians to argue what the “value” of a game should be. And then, it starts to get overly complicated. Should the team that’s down by 3-points in the standings, pull its goalie in the final 30 seconds, to try for the regulation time win? Or should it settle for the possibility of 2-points, by winning in overtime? And again, should they pull their goalie in the final 30 seconds of overtime, to try for the two points? Or, do they simply take their chances in the shootout, to try to salvage 1 point?

That’s a whole lot of scenarios. When simplicity tells us, “games are either won or lost.” Forget about the points, that complicate things. If you go to 3-points for regulation time win, some team will get 50 regulation time wins and earn 150 points, thus SHATTERING the Montreal Canadiens single season point record. Then the record book has to insert asteriks for Games Played and an explanatory note that indicates that, in that era, wins were counted for 2-points, not three. And so forth. Whereas, I think we can still “reasonably” argue that the standard of a benchmark season is 50 wins in lieu of “100-points.” 50 wins would equal 100-points, under the current formula. A record of 50-32 would certainly put a team in the playoffs. And yes, with straight up wins and losses, teams with a record of 37-45 will make the playoffs, too, at the #8 seed. This is what the Atlanta Hawks did two seasons ago. Sure, it looks bad. But really, playoffs are just about being the Top Eight teams in the conference, irrespective of whether that record is a winning one or not. I, personally, wouldn’t want to see a 30-52 team make the playoffs, but it could happen that way, at some point.


February 15th, 2010
10:02 pm

I do not think you will ever see the “loser point” go away. It allows for more teams to have “winning” seasons, with more wins than loses (as long as you do not count an OTL as a loss). In an 82 game season, if you end up with at least 82 points, then you have at least a .500 season. I believe that the NHL marketing folks at the like the idea of more “successful” teams.


February 15th, 2010
10:26 pm

Brian & rob – For the record, I too have no issues with ties…and the shootout is an abomination. I hate that an individual skills contest decides a professiona team sport. That being said, it is a fan favorite and will be with us for years to come.

shrugs…it is what it is.

Brendan – As always, I enjoy benefiting from your “seminars”. Now, to take one small snippet from your eloquent posts…the Hawks did indeed make the playoffs two years ago with a record of 37-45…a .451 winning %.

That would be very similar to the Thrashers of 2007-08, who finished with 34 wins and 48 losses, (again, using just the Ws and Ls format), making the playoffs and taking the Detroit Red Wings, (54-28 that season), to a seventh and deciding game.

The Hawks then took the number one seed Boston Celtics…who went 66-16 during the season and ultimately won the NBA championship that year…to a seventh game in that series. The fan base in Atlanta was re-energized and the team benefited greatly from that thrilling series. It was amazing and fun to follow.

That’s one of the reason I believe it’s better to make the playoffs…even if it is as a lower seed…then to not, even if ya know there is no way you’re gonna win it all.

FlamesFan – I think you’re comments are not without merit…it inflates records.


February 15th, 2010
10:43 pm

I haven’t even read past the title yet! NO NO NO!! Awarding nothing for hockey players playing three grueling, bone-breaking NHL periods at even score is an absolutely abhorent idea. Then they play an OT/SO and still lose for nothing??? Total non-starter of an idea, imo. This will quickly and completely bury the several teams struggling early in the season and they will start mailing it in by mid-November or early December at the latest. duh! Just go back to wins and ties if the loser point ticks ppl off so much.

I’ll go on record again as favoring the 3 point games. 3 points for a regulation win. 2 points for an OT win. 1 point for an OTL. 0 points fort a regulation loss. You start every game with the possibility of earning 0 to 3 points. If the NHL wants excitement in the points race, this is it! If a team has a monster early month with a lot of regulations wins they can set themselves up. Unless they fade in the spring and get passed by the teams that get hot in the spring…etc etc etc, the possible scenarios are many.


February 15th, 2010
10:51 pm

Sorry. Let me clarify” “Just go back to wins and ties at the end of three periods if the loser point ticks ppl off so much.”


February 15th, 2010
11:34 pm

Kracker, even a team 10-23 at Christmas, isn’t out of it. Not when 37-45 might get that very same team into the playoffs. (That’s 27-22 the rest of the way. Not exactly an impossible mission, either.) It’s a long, long season. Starting out 10-23 is a bad start. But even the team that begins 23-10 … hasn’t locked up a blessed thing at Christmas. The beauty of wins and losses is … you must keep on winning. If, at 23-10, they go on an eight game losing streak, 23-18 puts them right back in the middle of the pack. Likewise, the 10-23 team that strings eight wins together … is 18-23, good enough for about 7th or 8th spot, in any given year.

The W-L standings completely changes the “mindset” to a game. There’s no consolation prize. If Detroit leads Columbus, 3-1, with 1:23 left in regulation, but surrenders a PPG, and then the Blue Jackets pull their goalie for the equalizer, the game is going to overtime. Where, again, it will be won or lost. And let’s say it goes to the shootout. But Columbus wins. Guess what Detroit got? Guess what Columbus got? And the lesson learned by the Red Wings, on that particular evening, is that a game is 60-minutes long. If you don’t win it … you don’t win it. In that respect, it’s just like the playoffs. That’s why I like the playoffs so much! It’s “Win, or face the consequences. No pity points in the playoffs.”

Even good teams like San Jose, Detroit, and Chicago are going to lose games to Columbus and Edmonton down the stretch. Wins and losses also reinforce “accountability.” Just because games 80, 81, and 82 are against Edmonton, Columbus, and Anaheim doesn’t mean they’re three guaranteed wins. Those games MUST be played … and MUST be won. That’s the beauty of it. Results … and consequences. Seems fair to me. It seem “right.”


February 15th, 2010
11:38 pm

Go back to the original game. A regulation tie – both teams get a point. End of story.

Yung JB from MTL

February 15th, 2010
11:42 pm

Trade White & Kozlov, then the OT-point problem will be resolved


February 15th, 2010
11:44 pm

And another things, imagine … down the stretch … that there were no “pity points” for losing, in the playoff race. And that it really were this simple. “We need TB to lose its last two games, while we win our last two games, and the Rangers split their last two, to make the playoffs.” You won’t ever see that. You won’t see something that “cut and dry.” For those consolation points will muddy up the waters of point totals. And push a team like the Rangers or Montreal right into the playoffs, even though they LOST their last four games of the season. Imagine it? Losing four or five games to end the season, but all in overtime or a shootout, to push them into the postseason.

Sickening, isn’t it? But it’s allllllllllllll legal. The NHL says, “That’s okay! Go ahead. Lose your way into the playoffs.”

@ least we'll always have 1999

February 16th, 2010
12:23 am

I was a goalie and as a goalie the shootout is awsome.


February 16th, 2010
12:29 am

Omg. There’s rumors all over on chat rooms that Thashers are moving to Winnerpeg? Any one see this. Sold to 24th richest guy in the world (David Tompson). Check out HF Boards under business section.

Wayne stuck in AL

February 16th, 2010
12:48 am

Dear Thrashette:
For the 1,249th time, the team isn’t moving to “Winnerpeg”. At least not for next season…

Tony C.

February 16th, 2010
1:20 am

I like the 3pts system;
Regulation Win=3pts
OT/SO Win=2pts winner, 1pt loser


February 16th, 2010
1:34 am

Interesting perspective. I’ll say this Atlanta 26-34 sure looks down right UGLY. :)

World Be Free

February 16th, 2010
5:33 am

You all make interesting points here guys, but I just don’t see the league changing the format as it is today. Eliminating the Shootout (exciting) or taking away points makes no sense because the fans like the points and the shootout. Fans say after regulation, “well, at least we got a point” for the team’s effort.

It’s like the 3 point shot in basketball; I hate the 3 point, but you can’t take it away because there’s not enough scoring in the NBA as it is. I hate the designated hitter in the American League, but you can’t remove it because it generates offense and fan interest.

I don’t see the league approving the sale of a team to move from Atlanta to Winnipeg.

World Be Free

February 16th, 2010
8:43 am

Some of you took issue with me the other day because of my general opposition to the Olympics. Well here’s a doozy concerning the U.S. Olympic Hockey Team.

The IOC is making Ryan miller remove “Miller Time” from his helmet because they are calling it advertising when it merely refers to his style of play. They are also making him remove his cousin’s name from his helmet, a kid who died from cancer. They are also making Jonathan Quick remove “Support Our Troops” from his mask because it’s considered propaganda.

The IOC is about as useful as the U.N. They have turned the Olympics into one big commercial disaster and now they want to shut it off when it pleases them. What a joke.


February 16th, 2010
8:45 am

Don’t really like the shootout. But if your gonna have it, how about a 2 on 2. Goalie/Defensman vs. 2 Offensive players?


February 16th, 2010
9:12 am

I agree with the shootout dissenters…but it’s an entertaining facet of the game and professional sports, well, it’s the entertainment business.

I completely agree with the “wins are wins” and “losses our losses” approach. I dislike consolation points. I’m sorry – you lose, you lose.

Given my position, I would say that the shootout needs to extended to 5 rounds…a slightly more equitable approach to finishing a game with “individual skills contest (Rawhide)”. The 3 round approach stenches of an NFL OT format where the team winning the coin flip wins the game on the 1st drive more than 50% of the time and the other team doesn’t even get a chance on offense.


February 16th, 2010
9:20 am

Very interesting concept Bill, Those three point games have hurt us more in the past than helped I think.

What if you got three points for a regulation win.
Two points for an overtime win.
One point for a shootout win.

With the losing team getting no points.

Thus the longer the games goes, the fewer points you can get. Would make the teams push harder in close games in regulation.

R. Stroz

February 16th, 2010
9:50 am

The IOC is making Ryan miller remove “Miller Time” from his helmet because they are calling it advertising when it merely refers to his style of play. They are also making him remove his cousin’s name from his helmet, a kid who died from cancer. They are also making Jonathan Quick remove “Support Our Troops” from his mask because it’s considered propaganda.

Both goalies should go on the ice with their masks adorned the way they please and dare the IOC to turn the situation into a “free speech” issue, the same “free speech” our ancestors have paid for with their lives.

Donovan McNabb

February 16th, 2010
10:16 am

Do away with the one point for loosing.

If they do eliminate the shootout the NHL needs to go to a full period OT like we have in the NFL and then if no scoring the game ends in a tie.


February 16th, 2010
10:20 am

Thrashette – Is this the “rumor” you are referring to? The “Classic Rock” radio station starting a “rumor” about the Thrashers moving to Winnipeg?

Yeah, I saw it….yawn

Same ‘ol male bovine excretion we’ve been having to deal with for years around here.

See this is much like the guys at Dave-FM posting up some comment about Ted Turner buying the Toronto Raptors of the NBA and moving them to Helena, Montana. Whatev…

Now…what’ll be interesting is what are they gonna say two weeks from now after the Olympics are over and no announcement is made…???

Nikita (in PA)

February 16th, 2010
10:27 am

I like the “loser’s point” — where I see the problem is that a game ending in regulation and a game ending in OT don’t count equally.


February 16th, 2010
10:33 am

I likr the idea of 3 points for a win. With 3 points being split to the Winner (2) and Loser (1) for OTs and Shootouts. The extra point is bogus.

And, Brendan – thanks for your thoughful reply post in the prior blog. I agree with you on most points. And ,I think you nailed it that winning backs fans will be harder than starting from scratch which is why I’d like to see the owners (we have owners?) do a better job aligning with the media for some more positive press regarding the entertainment aspect of hockey, if not postive news about the team.

I think the fact that hockey is a great, and addictive game, is lost here in Atlanta. I’ve seen it happen many times with people from work, who go to one game and are now fans. Gotta work that angle more now than ever.


February 16th, 2010
10:38 am

Ok, I crunched some numbers, I’m sure this won’t show up and be pretty, but if they went to a Win-Loss OTWin-OTLoss system, here’s your standings…

East Team W-L W-L(OT)(Pts)
1 Washington 34-13 7-8 (124)
2 New Jersey 29-21 8-3 (106)
3 Ottawa 28-23 8-4 (104)
4 Pittsburgh 26-22 10-4 (102)
5 Buffalo 26-18 7-9 (101)
6 Philadelphia 27-25 5-3 (94)
7 NY Rangers 25-27 3-7 (88)
8 Tampa Bay 20-24 6-11 (83)
9 Atlanta 20-24 6-10 (82)
10 Boston 17-22 10-11 (82)
11 Montreal 16-28 13-6 (80)
12 Florida 18-27 6-10 (76)
13 Carolina 19-30 5-7 (74)
14 NY Islanders 13-29 12-8 (71)
15 Toronto 18-31 1-11 (67)

West Team W-L W-L(OT)(Pts)
1 San Jose 33-13 7-9 (122)
2 Chicago 28-15 13-5 (115)
3 Vancouver 32-22 5-2 (108)
4 Colorado 29-20 6-6 (105)
5 Los Angeles 27-20 10-4 (105)
6 Phoenix 25-21 12-5 (104)
7 Nashville 25-23 8-5 (96)
8 Calgary 25-23 5-9 (94)
9 Anaheim 24-25 6-7 (91)
10 Dallas 22-21 6-12 (90)
11 Detroit 22-21 6-12 (90)
12 Minnesota 22-27 8-4 (86)
13 St. Louis 20-25 8-9 (85)
14 Columbus 20-28 5-10 (80)
15 Edmonton 14-36 5-6 (58)

World Be Free

February 16th, 2010
10:39 am

Stroz-totally and completely agree my friend.

Concerning the IOC, if you look at their origins, it’s a pretty good chance we had to militarily save their hides from speaking a different language. These pompous fat cats never fought for anything other than 4 star restaurants and 5 star hotels. Juan Antonio can shove his “most exceptional” up his best intentions.

World Be Free

February 16th, 2010
10:39 am

Sorry for getting off track, back on subject.


February 16th, 2010
10:41 am

The IOC is about as useful as the U.N. They have turned the Olympics into one big commercial disaster and now they want to shut it off when it pleases them. What a joke.

WBF – here, here! A complete unmitigated joke of an organization. Perhaps Miller should paint over Miller Time and have his mask read: “The IOC Sux” on it instead. What are they gonna do? Give him a game misconduct? Jack-legs.

As for the distribution of points issue, I’m with Bill on this one. After several years of the current system, it does seem to reward mediocrity and shoot-out specialists. If not for the likes of Hossa, Kozlov and Erik Christensen, would the Thrashers have garnered as many “winner” points as they have over the years?

The 3 point system in which more emphasis is put on a regulation win would be nice. It would separate the pack quite a bit more. But alas, the NHL doesn’t want that. They want everyone making their push to the playoffs in March. And with some teams better than others in shoot-out proficiency, we’re seeing too many “not to lose” efforts in OT in hopes of garnering the 2nd point. Rewarding a team 3 points for a regulation win might incent teams to at least try harder at the end of a game to score rather than be satisfied going to OT.


February 16th, 2010
10:43 am

The loser point is aptly named, points for losing? Ridiculous. At a minimum they should go to 3pts for winning in regulation, and then do the 2-1 split for the OT/shootout. The casual fan does like the shootout, as opposed to the old tie games.

“There’s rumors all over on chat rooms that Thashers are moving to Winnerpeg? Any one see this. Sold to 24th richest guy in the world (David Tompson). Check out HF Boards under business section.”

I just read that thread, let’s of smoke going on. Makes you go, hmmm, and wonder what may be true, when you consider what we do know from our end. Spirit would like to sell the Thrashers. Phillips looking to get out of the naming rights (they may have been told of a sale). Waddell kept in place year after year when we know he’s incompetent, yet the owners like him (for keeping to a budget?), and salary was just rushed to be dumped in the form of Kari, before the break, and no bid Kovy contract. Very interesting.


February 16th, 2010
10:43 am

Who wants to spend around $200 for a family of 4 to go with a hockey game and leave with the result being a tie? That’s awful. A tie should have no place in sports.

World Be Free

February 16th, 2010
11:02 am

Smoothie-just got my blood up.
Toby-ties are like kissing your sister during Kiss Cam!


February 16th, 2010
11:25 am

J(Z) – Well done, my friend…


February 16th, 2010
11:31 am

based on Atl’s last 3 games…4 points, do the same for the last 22 games, say we get a point for the 22nd game, Atl. has 91 points, games in hand against the 3 teams directly ahead, and games in hand on all 4 teams behind. Will 91 gets us in?


February 16th, 2010
11:35 am

name me ONE fan that would be happy with a tie…not a fan in my book, they might as well go…%&*@……..their sister. %&*@=kiss you filthy bestards.


February 16th, 2010
11:37 am

Bob, do you really think the Thrashers would be more viable over a 10 year period in Winnipeg? Perhaps they’ll be okay due to revenue sharing for a little while, but I don’t see ANY small market doing better than the other small markets right now or Atlanta in the short-term.

The NBA can’t make any money, the NFL is about to go into a lockout and the MLB has their own share of small markets suffering due to over-expansion. The problem isn’t with Atlanta, it’s a symptom of expansion and over-saturation of the market…not to mention ridiculous salary inflation in sports. How many casual fans have stopped going because they resent the high ticket prices and the overpaid athelete?

I bet Atlanta would be more successful if there were 6 fewer teams in the NHL. A 24-team league would be better and more economically sustainable. Plus the talent pool wouldn’t be as diluted and the team would be more talented more of the time regardless of superstar defection.

Do we really need hockey in Columbus, Tampa AND Miami, Phoenix, Anaheim AND San Jose? Winnipeg wasn’t viable then and it wouldn’t be viable now. The cty of Quebec couldn’t even keep their owner happy. And as we know, if your owner(s) aren’t committed, you’re screwed. Would you want to run a sports franchise in this corrupt, poorly run city?

Cut down on the number of owners to 24 and I bet you see everything improve. I’m all for hockey in the South, but not when there are this many teams in the league. If Atlanta loses its team, then Phoenix, Florida, Columbus, Colorado (have you seen their pathetic attendance?)the Islanders and a team in California should be contracted as well.


February 16th, 2010
11:40 am

Dwayne – yes, 91 points does it. Might even get us the # 7 seed. Oh how I would love a showdown with the “Kovy-led” Devils. 88-90 may be enough for the # 8 seed based on our schedule, the number of games-in-hand we have and the number of common opponents fighting for the same points.


February 16th, 2010
11:45 am

The Thrashers are not leaving for Winnepeg or anywhere else right now.


February 16th, 2010
11:49 am

Hey everyone – off topic, but a nice article on Kulda. http://theahl.com/kulda-has-a-mentor-on-his-nhl-quest-p140775


February 16th, 2010
11:51 am

If Atlanta loses another hockey team, their new name should have to be the Nomads, The Wanderers, or The Island of Misfit Toys.


February 16th, 2010
11:54 am

I have never been a fan of the 3/2/1 system.

Make wins in regulation or overtime worth 2 points, make shootout wins worth 1 point. No charity point. Also, I think they should extend overtime to 10 minutes, making the shootout more rare, and thus, more special. Teams won’t just be able to trap and play for the 1 point tie in regulation, plus playing it safe in overtime means they lose out, too.


February 16th, 2010
11:54 am

In other countries, three points are awarded for a win, one point for losing in overtime, two points for winning in overtime or shootout, and zero points for a loss in regulation. This is how the Czech Extraliga, Finnish SM-Liiga and the Swedish Elite Leaugue does it. I do not know how it is done in KHL and other places. Additionally, if I am not mistaken, (at least in Sweden), you are not allowed to substitute the goalie for a regular player in OT, unless there is a power play coming up. Likely for reasons Brendan touched on earlier.

The current format in the NHL is horrible from a “sportsman’s point of view”. The fact that games can result in 2 or 3 points awarded is just awful. Especially for other teams at playoff crunch time. And it is highly aggravating when you check “Tonight’s Freebie Point Games”.

I guess the main reasoning behind this “NHL hybrid” instead of a 3 point only system is that the point spread between teams tightens. Which supposedly will put more butts in the seats. On the other hand, a coming from behind hot team will in a 3 point format be rewarded for regulation wins and can quickly advance in the standings. Which also will increase attendance.

I am sure they will not do away with the shootouts, but it will somewhat increase fairness to go 5 rounds instead of 3 (like MASHAPlayer7 suggested).

World Be Free, in my opinion it makes perfect sense to disallow personal messages on the Olympians. What the message is saying is irrelevant and it needs to be a clear cut rule like no messages – period. For instance, “Support our troops” or something of that nature sounds good to an American audience, but might be highly offensive to folks in other nations.


February 16th, 2010
11:59 am

What if the message was Support all Troops?


February 16th, 2010
12:08 pm

I agree with your points, Smoothie. The market is overly saturated, the ticket prices are too high, the athletes are being overpaid, it’s just another symptom of the excesses that have been going on all over the country for far too long.

Keep this in mind though, the Winnipeg rumor has a very rich guy buying the team (and apparently this guy just sold off one of his businesses raising major cash–huge red flag there, this isn’t the time to be buying and selling businesses). My point is when you’re a rich guy flush with cash, you spend the excess money on luxury items. And if the guy is a huge hockey fan, he would be willing to eat losses to bring his town a team and own an NHL club. You also have the appreciation of the asset over time. That’s what I’ve always hoped for here, one rich guy to own the club who loved hockey and wouldn’t run the club off it’s balance sheet and income statement, but would run the team out of love of the game, and to win.


February 16th, 2010
12:11 pm

“Chelios, who recently celebrated his 48th birthday, won his first Stanley Cup – with Montreal in 1986 – more than two years before the 21-year-old Kulda was even born.

As you might expect, the experience of playing with such an accomplished veteran has been invaluable to the up-and-coming prospect.

“He’s played a lot, he knows the game, and I’m trying to listen to everything he says,” said Kulda. “He always talks with me on the ice and off the ice, and he’s just a role model for anyone who wants to play the game for a long time.”

Kulda especially credits Chelios with improving his decision-making with the puck in the defensive zone, his positional play and his work on the penalty kill – a situation where the pair is frequently on the ice for Chicago.”

Three things:

1) Great link MASHA!! Kulda deserves some ink.

2) The fact that Cheli is 48 and still THIS effective, even at the AHL level, is amazing.

3) WBF and I have been hammering home the importance of a mentor for Zach and Cheli should be given a contract for the rest of the season. There are only 4 back-to-back games and we would have the depth to do it in March with Pops and Shubie on the bench / in the pressbox.

R. Stroz

February 16th, 2010
12:11 pm

I see nothing wrong with “Support Our Troops.” That’s about as tame a message as can be delivered.

Now, if the message was “Smash the Diaperheads”, that would be different.

I’ll laugh my butt off if the some medal winner says “I’m going to Disney World” after winning a medal.