BCHL bringing back the shootout

The junior A league approved changes to the overtime format at its recent annual general meeting.

Motions raised at the recent BCHL annual general meeting are now finalized and the league has unveiled some rules changes that will be in place for the 2018-19 season.

There will be a new format for overtime.

The previous format saw teams play five minutes of sudden death four-on-four followed by five minutes of sudden death three-on-three.

Now, if teams are tied at the conclusion of regulation, they will proceed directly into five minutes of sudden death three-on-three.

If a winner is still not determined, a three-player shootout, continuing on with as many shooters as necessary to determine a winner.

The new overtime procedure mirrors what’s being done in the National Hockey League.

“I’m not a huge fan of the shootout personally, but it’s great for the fans,” said Chilliwack Chiefs bench boss Brian Maloney. “I guess I’m assuming it’s for the fans. I find four on four and three on three entertaining, and I’d prefer to have it without the shootout, but it’s not up to me.”

The BCHL will add hybrid icing for next season, another move that mimics the NHL.

The BCHL previously used automatic icing for pucks shot in from beyond the centre line. The new system introduces a race for the puck to determine if icing will be whistled or not.

“It’s a race to the hash marks,” Maloney said.

The dates of the 2018 Bauer BCHL Showcase have been revealed.

The event returns to the only home it’s ever known, Chilliwack’s Prospera Centre, running Sept. 21-23.

Both ice sheets will be used.

See bchl.ca for more info.

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