At this point, polling the readers on whether or not they like the shootout on a New Jersey Devils blog is going to be a pretty straightforward answer: No.
Therefore, I think it is wiser to ask what method should replace the shootout.
There is some weight behind the idea of 3-on-3 after the 4-on-4 is unsuccessful. This idea was briefly showcased when the Devils took on the Los Angeles Kings earlier in the season in a twist of fate kind of situation. The action was nonstop and it was very intense hockey.
This is probably the method that will overtake the shootout, if it is ever overthrown.
Some teams really like the shootout because they are good at it. After all, the Devils were one of those teams a couple of years ago. With the lineup of Ilya Kovalchuk, Zach Parise, and Patrik Elias, how could you complain.
Now, the Devils throw out different people just about every shootout and couldn’t hit an open net outside of the 9-round shootout on Tuesday. The Devils have now lost 11 shootouts and 16 total losses in some form of overtime.
Other options in the overtime could be to keep the 4-on-4 but keep the periods longer or go back to ties.
I think it is ridiculous that a professional hockey game could end in a skills competition. Fortunately, they don’t do this in the playoffs. Imagine this kind of premise in other sports. In the NBA, they would end in a free-throw contest or slam dunk contest, maybe MLB ends in a home run derby (ESPN would love this), or the NFL ends, well, like the NCAA.
What do you think Devils Army? It’s no secret most of NHL fans don’t like the shootout and if they feel neutral towards it, they may not mind seeing 3-on-3 hockey instead.
If there is a method that is not on here, comment below and it will be added!