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Skating on thin ice: rule changes and team strategies in the NHL

Skating on thin ice: rule changes and team strategies in the NHL
Skating on thin ice: rule changes and team strategies in the NHL
In an effort to stimulate a more exciting and entertaining style of play, the National Hockey Association (NHL) changed the rewards associated with the results of overtime games. Under the new rules, teams tied at the end of regulation both receive a single point regardless of the outcome in overtime. A team scoring in the sudden-death 5-minute overtime period would earn an additional point. Prior to the rule change in the 1999-2000 season, the team losing in overtime would receive no points while the winning team earned 2 points. This paper presents a theoretical model to explain the effect of the rule change on the strategy of play during both the overtime period and the regulation time game. The results suggest that under the new overtime format equally powerful teams will play more offensively in overtime resulting in more games decided by a sudden-death goal. The results also suggest that while increasing the likelihood of attacking in overtime, the rule change would have a perverse effect on the style of play during regulation by causing them to play conservatively for the tie. Empirical data confirm the theoretical results. The paper also show that increasing the rewards to a win in regulation time would not prevent teams from playing defensively during regular time.
401
University of Southampton
Banerjee, Anurag N.
4f772e58-24c0-4266-ba41-18f70a6108c4
Swinnen, Johan
8bb022ea-3512-4aec-b8f1-d8eed018509b
Weersink, Alfons
203c7eab-8ace-43bc-8dc9-780c7e78a296
Banerjee, Anurag N.
4f772e58-24c0-4266-ba41-18f70a6108c4
Swinnen, Johan
8bb022ea-3512-4aec-b8f1-d8eed018509b
Weersink, Alfons
203c7eab-8ace-43bc-8dc9-780c7e78a296

(2004) Skating on thin ice: rule changes and team strategies in the NHL (Discussion Papers in Economics and Econometrics, 401) Southampton, UK. University of Southampton 24pp.

Record type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)

Abstract

In an effort to stimulate a more exciting and entertaining style of play, the National Hockey Association (NHL) changed the rewards associated with the results of overtime games. Under the new rules, teams tied at the end of regulation both receive a single point regardless of the outcome in overtime. A team scoring in the sudden-death 5-minute overtime period would earn an additional point. Prior to the rule change in the 1999-2000 season, the team losing in overtime would receive no points while the winning team earned 2 points. This paper presents a theoretical model to explain the effect of the rule change on the strategy of play during both the overtime period and the regulation time game. The results suggest that under the new overtime format equally powerful teams will play more offensively in overtime resulting in more games decided by a sudden-death goal. The results also suggest that while increasing the likelihood of attacking in overtime, the rule change would have a perverse effect on the style of play during regulation by causing them to play conservatively for the tie. Empirical data confirm the theoretical results. The paper also show that increasing the rewards to a win in regulation time would not prevent teams from playing defensively during regular time.

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Published date: 2004

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 33785
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/33785
PURE UUID: 6937efb1-be48-4790-a410-6bc0dd4d7602

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Date deposited: 18 May 2006
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 15:52

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Contributors

Author: Anurag N. Banerjee
Author: Johan Swinnen
Author: Alfons Weersink

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