If you notice the Bruins trying a little harder to go for the game-winner at the end of regulation and overtime in games this year, it shouldn’t be a shock.
The team that won 10 shootouts last season — tied for second-most in the NHL with Los Angeles, four behind Phoenix — and made the playoffs in the season’s last week two of the last three years will be reacting to the NHL Board of Governors’ decision to change the league’s tie-breaker rule.
Shootout wins will no longer be counted when determining which of two teams tied in points in the standings finishes higher in the standings. The first tie-breaker will now be regulation/overtime wins.
This should decrease the number of shootouts from its all-time high of 184 last season, and put some urgency into teams willing to take their chances at getting the extra standings point in a shootout (the Bruins, and others) to actually win a hockey game in a conventional matter.
This blog advocates for abolishing the shootout altogether, but as long as it still exists at least it has been lessened in value.