NHL general managers approve 3-on-3 OT; coach's challenge

NHL general managers approve 3-on-3 OT; coach's challenge

LAS VEGAS – And so much for that 4-on-4 overtime. The NHL general managers have approved pushing it down to 3-on-3.

There were questions after the general managers meetings in March as to what format the league would use for overtime. The American Hockey League went to seven minutes of overtime this year – 4-on-4 until the first whistle after the three minute mark and then 3-on-3. According to McKenzie the NHLPA did not want the AHL format. Apparently the choice was no change or three-on-three for five minutes.

This keeps the NHL’s favorite post-2005 lockout gimmick – the shootout, which basically led to the ultimate demise of the Los Angeles Kings last season. Alas for those purists who despise the shootout (cough, me) the chance for games to not be decided by a skills competition is done, pending Board of Governors approval of course.

But it should make it more probable for a game to end in overtime rather than via shootout.

"I think the whole thing is trying to lessen the number of shootouts even though they are exciting," Devils GM Ray Shero said.

Said Red Wings GM Ken Holand, "We want a higher percentage of games decided in overtime."

Basically the NHL is trying to make OT more exciting and keep the shootouts -- which was made to rope in more fans.

As for the coach's challenge, they will come on offsides goals and goaltender interference plays. This follows the NHL competition committee's recommendation. 

This could be fascinating and strategic as well for coach's, who've never had this opportunity before. You have the magic of replay. You use it on various elements of the game. Why not on goaltender interference and off-sides?

- - - - - - -

Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY