TORONTO (AP) Dry scraping the ice before overtime will be among the topics discussed at Tuesday’s NHL general managers meeting.
For the first time, regular-season games pause before overtime so the ice can get a ”dry scrape.” The hope was to improve the quality of play and reduce the number of shootouts deciding games.
Early evidence suggested that it – along with changing ends in overtime – was working. But GMs will discuss the dry scrape because of the time it’s adding to games and the possibility that it stops momentum at the end of regulation.
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”That’s an interesting one,” Calgary Flames GM Brad Treliving said Monday at the Prime Time Sports Management Conference. ”It used to break up between overtime and the shootout. Now it kinds of breaks up between the game and overtime. But the ice is better.”
Some players have complained about the dry scrape, which seems to delay overtime four to six minutes after the third period ends.
Deputy commissioner Bill Daly said getting rid of the dry scrape is ”one possibility.” That would require approval of the GMs, board of governors and players’ association.
The Ontario Hockey League got rid of the dry scrape in early October. At the NHL level, there may not be enough momentum to cut the dry-scrape experiment shorter than at least this season.
”It doesn’t bother me one bit,” Montreal Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin said.
Another topic expected on the agenda again is three-on-three play in overtime. The American Hockey League is trying it this year, and a prospects tournament in Traverse City, Michigan, also experimented with it.
Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland has long been a proponent of using three-on-three in NHL overtime. But Daly questions whether such a format would win wide support.
”I know there continues to be some resistance to that happening,” he said.