After a day long meeting between the representatives from all 30 NHL franchises, there has been quite a breakthrough on several proposed rule changes for next season. According to Bob McKenzie, the NHL has agreed to scrap the 4-on-4 overtime format next year, and move straight to 3-on-3 action if both teams are tied after regulation.
Originally, there was some belief that the NHL would push to adopt the AHL's overtime format, which was three minutes of 4-on-4, followed by four minutes of 3-on-3 if both teams remained tied. However, as McKenzie also mentioned, the NHLPA was heavily opposed to that idea as it would lengthen the total time of the game.
A lot of people were opposed to the idea after news broke on Twitter, but I think this could actually add a whole new dimension to overtime. There could actually be a lot of strategy involved in terms of deploying certain players, in order to maximize your changes of winning. Do you go with one forward and two defenseman? Two forwards and a defenseman? Hell, I'm sure at some point one coach will decide to roll out three forwards. There will be a ton of room to work with, and while it make take some getting used to, the less shootouts the better.
In addition to the overtime changes, the board of governors will also vote tomorrow to allow a coaches challenge for goaltender interference and missed offsides calls. This has been a widely suggested change for quite a while now, and it's nice to finally see this be put in motion. We will likely get full details of what the coaches challenge will entail at some point tomorrow, but as of right now, we just know that it will likely be coming next season.