NEW YORK CITY – Capitalizing on the success of the new 3-on-3 format for the first overtime period in NHL regular season games, NHL officials plan take things a step further an introduce a second overtime period that will feature just one skater per team. “This can’t fail,” said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman at a press conference Wednesday. Bettman revealed that the inspiration for 1-on-1 hockey came from his Thursday night group fitness class.
“Sometimes we mix it up and play dodgeball or running bases,” Bettman said. “This one time, we played a game called ‘steal the bacon’, where one player from each team races to snatch a ball from the center of the gym. My team lost, but I thought to myself, ‘how is this not a professional sporting event’?”
The NHL hasn’t yet announced a timetable for the changes, but sources anticipate it will happen some time next summer. Bettman also suggested that there are “numerous other ideas” the NHL is exploring, such as using figure skating-style judges or eliminating sticks during a third overtime period.