Tackling the ‘tie’ issue

  • Jan. 22, 2014 9:09 p.m.

The old adage in sport claims a tie is like kissing your sister.

Now I’m not sure what sports leagues have against their sisters but apparently it’s harsh enough that the major professional sports leagues have methods to avoid such an ending to a game. All the leagues have an overtime formula in some form or another.

Baseball has the original true form of settling the game by playing until there is a winner or until the other team runs out of pitchers and needs to have infielders or close family members step in to pitch.

Football plays an overtime session and depending on which side of the border the rules differ slightly but the end result is rarely a tie.

It seems though the NHL has the only system which needs an overhaul in my humble opinion.

The four on four overtime is some good hockey so maybe continue on that path and go with three on three after two minutes, then two on two after another two minutes. Drop the shoot out aspect and try something new.

If there is no goal at the end of the two on two session then each team doesn’t get a point. Nada. Zip. Zero. Zilch.

The rationale in my twisted mind is to force teams to get aggressive in the overtime session. If a point is guaranteed win or lose, then there seems to be a little less effort to get that extra point by one or both teams.

Let’s go full out to win and see what happens.

Road teams might be a little less cautious knowing there is no reward for playing it safe and getting into the shootout where you are going to get a point for certain.

I always hear about the penalty shot being the most exciting play in hockey so why have six or more of them at the end of overtime? Doesn’t that remove some of the shine? Does MLB have a homerun contest if tied after the bottom of the 9th?

Does football have punt or kickoff returns to settle games that are deadlocked?

What about golf having a hole in one contest to see who dons the green jacket at the Masters?

Time to shelve the shootout. Top shelf if you like.


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